Pomegranate Lemon Layered Cheesecake on a Chocolate Almond Crust (raw, vegan, GF)
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This cheesecake was inspired by and for my loving husband. He brought 3 pomegranates home from the grocery store and those silly things rolled around on my counter for about two weeks! I kept moving them from one spot to another and decided that I better do something with them. So I opted for cheesecake! I knew that Bob was going to be out-of-town for a week so I wanted to make something that would freeze well. This batter is enough to make a large cheesecake but I made a small one and them some single serving cups for him. A large cheesecake is just beautiful but it is also fun to be creative and pour it in all sorts of different containers. The flavor of this dessert is bright and light. I was surprised that the coloring came out rather lavender. The seeds were so vibrant and red. You could add about a 1/4 of a cup of beet juice if you wanted to amp up the coloring without affecting the flavor.
Ingredients: makes 9″ Springform pan
- 3 cups cashews, soaked for 1 – 2 hours
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 3/4 cup raw agave nectar
- 1 cup coconut oil, melted
- 2 Tbsp lecithin, ground or liquid
- 3/4 cup fresh pomegranate juice
Preparation for crust:
- Place the almonds in a food processor fitted with the “S” blade. Process until they reach a small meal size. Be careful that you don’t over process and start making a nut butter. Been there, done that.
- Add the cacao, date, vanilla, and salt. Blend together.
- Press the batter into the bottom of your pan. Save about 1/2 cup to the side for the topping.
Preparation for filling:
- Be sure to soak the cashews, this is a very important step. This will soften the nuts so they will blend to a creamy texture.
- Blend the cashews, lemon juice, vanilla, salt and agave in a high-speed blender until smooth. This can take up to 5 minutes. Be sure to stop and scrap the side occasionally. Test the batter but rubbing it between your thumb and forefinger. If you feel any grit, continue blending till smooth. This will ensure a smooth mouth feel.
- Once smooth, add the coconut oil and lecithin. Blend until incorporated. Pour 1/2 of the batter into a separate container. Add the pomegranate juice to the batter that remains in the blender craft. Process till combined.
- You now have a pinkish cheesecake batter and a white batter. Pour the batter on top of the crust, alternating the colors. Drag a tooth pick through the layers, swirling them together.
- Place the cheesecake in the freezer till set. Sprinkle the remaining crust on top of the pie as a garnish.
- This pie freezes well. Allow the pie to sit for 10-20 minutes at room temperature before serving. To slice, use a long knife and dip the blade in hot water in-between cuts, this will give you a clean and pretty cut for presentation. Keep left-overs in the fridge or freezer.
- Interested in the nutritional values of this recipe? Nutritional Data will help you calculate the recipe.
Sous Chef Substitutions:
- Lecithin ~ if you don’t have lecithin on hand, you can omit it IF you plan on serving the cake in individual sized cups. As a whole pie, it won’t have enough structure, unless you freeze the pie and serve it right out of the freezer. There are always ways to work around this. :)
- Cashews ~ I don’t recommend using any other nut. Cashews don’t have to strong of a flavor to influence the overall taste and they get nice and creamy when blended.
These little cups are Bob’s favorite way to eat a cheesecake. :)