Sunday, July 29, 2012

Mini Raw Carrot Cake Cheesecakes


Carrot cake or cheesecake...that was the question.  The moist spicy carrot filled cake topped with luscious white sweet frosting...or the creamy rich melt in my mouth cheesecake. I was craving both, and it was a tough decision which to make!  I took a poll on Facebook from my friends but still couldn't decide! I love both, and I wanted to make both this weekend, but that was just a lot more work than I wanted.  So...I remembered a hybrid of the two I had recently seen on Without Adornment which was a carrot cake topped with cheesecake.  It was a genius brilliant idea, so I decided to create my own carrot cake cheesecake.



I wanted this to be a raw cake, since I am not into heating the oven right now in the summer and waiting for things to cool.  I kind of guessed when creating the cake part as to the amounts of pecans, coconut and carrots to use, but it turned out delicious!  I spiced it with fresh ginger, cinnamon, and cardamom, and sweetened it with vanilla, dates and maple syrup.  It would have been delicious just as was, but what is a carrot cake without raisins (golden in my case) and chopped nuts (pecans) mixed in?  



I was quite excited about the cake portion and could have just ate that before I had a chance to make the cheesecake part, but I knew as a whole it would be ten times more delicious!  



I used my usual raw cheesecake base sweetened with maple and spiced up with cardamom.  The flavor was just lovely!  It would be perfect with the cake base!



Once the cake was set, I topped it off with a layer of beautiful white frosting, because I just felt it was needed.  I was in a bit of an over the top kind of mood.



As I finally enjoyed one of the little cakes, what I tasted was better than I could have imagined!  Combining your favorite desserts when you can't decide which one to make is clearly a wonderful idea!



Mini Raw Carrot Cake Cheesecakes
makes four 4 inch cheesecakes

Cake:
1 1/4 cups pecans
1 1/4 cups dried shredded unsweetened coconut
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 inch chunk fresh ginger (or 1 tsp dried)
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
2 Tbsp agave nectar or maple syrup
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
7 dates, pitted
2 cups grated organic carrots
1/4 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup chopped pecans


Filling:
2 3/4 cups raw cashews (preferably soaked overnight)
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp coconut water (or filtered water)
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1/3 cup plus 3 Tbsp agave nectar or maple syrup
1/2 cup plus 1 Tbsp coconut oil (warmed to liquid)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 tsp ground cardamom
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract and seeds from half a vanilla bean (other half reserved for topping)
2 tsp maple extract

Cream Topping:
3/4 cup raw cashew pieces (preferably soaked overnight)
1/2 cup coconut water
3/4 cup fresh young coconut meat* (or additional soaked cashews if not available)
2 tablespoons agave nectar or maple syrup
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract and seeds of half a vanilla bean (reserved from filling)
1/4 cup coconut oil (warmed to liquid)

Lightly coat four 4 inch spring form removable bottom pans with coconut oil. To prepare the carrot cake, process pecans, coconut and sea salt in a food processor until the pecans are fine crumbs, then add the spices, syrup, vanilla and dates and process until well mixed.  Add the carrots and process until blended but not pureed (a few carrot flecks). Mix in the raisins and pecans.  Firmly press crust into the bottoms of the prepared pans, and set aside.


To make the cheesecake filling, drain the cashews and combine them with coconut water, lemon juice and syrup, coconut oil, sea salt, cardamom and vanilla and maple extract in a food processor and blend until smooth and creamy. Pour the cheesecake filling over the carrotcake, then place in the freezer until it is set, 4 to 6 hours, then once set store in the fridge.

To make topping, drain cashews and blend all ingredients until smooth in a food processor, and set in the freezer about 30 minutes until a frosting consistency. Place in a pastry bag and pipe decoratively around the top of the cheesecake. Store leftover cake in the fridge.





30 comments:

  1. oooo wow these sound fantastic! i love carrot cake!

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    1. Thank you :)! Me too! This was one of the best tasting ones I have had ;)!

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  2. Looks like a brilliant idea! Must be delicious!

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    1. Thank you :)! They were wonderful!

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  3. Oh my goodness - I love carrot cake, and have not had it in so long! I need to make this...

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    1. You totally should! It was the best tasting carrot cake I have had, the raw carrots make it that way! Plus, you don't have to wait for the cake to bake and cool!

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  4. YUM! This is what cheesecake should look like! Fantastic!

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  5. wow, this is an incredible dessert!

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  6. Very creative! I like the way you used the carrots in this recipe. :)

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    1. Thank you :)! The carrots gave it a wonderful flavor since they were raw!

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  7. Amy do you have a cook book? If you don't, you so should....

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    1. I don't yet, but hope to someday when I am not so busy ;)!

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  8. Are you getting raw maple syrup somewhere? I've never seen it, don't think it's possible. Thanks in advance! Pretty cake!

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    1. No, the maple syrup is not raw...but you can use agave nectar or your choice of sweetener in its place! I just like the flavor of it.

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    2. Understandable! Yum! :) Thanks.

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  9. This is amazing!!! I never knew that these ingredients make a cream topping. I won't believe it until I make it (next weekend). I wanted to ask you though what do you mean when you say for instance one cup plus 1 tbsp. Is this literal, like one cup and 1 tbsp of syrup?

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    1. Thank you :)! I am sure you will love it! Yes, I do mean literal. But if you accidentally pour a little more in it is not the end of the world ;).

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  10. Hi! I just made this recipe and is delicious!! I have been vegetarian for 20 years and I just started to eat more raw food. I love your blog and your creativity with food. I want to try all your recipes they all look amazing. And your pictures are very pretty. Congratulations on your blog! Irma

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    1. Awesome! Thank you for letting me know how you liked it :)! Congrats on starting raw food, I just made that same transition last year! Thank you for your kind words :)!

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  11. WOW! this is what's called "food porn"! the background brought up so many memories...Thank you, thank you, thank you! and a funny phrase - "leftover cake". Hehe... leftover cake??? great joke

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  12. Delicious! I made this dessert recently and it turned out wonderful! I love all the ingredients and the beautiful flavor! Does this dessert freeze well?

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    1. Awesome! Happy you enjoyed them :)! Yes, they freeze, but I wouldn't keep them frozen for more than a few weeks.

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