Sweet Potato Pie ‘Cheesecake’

    After the inglorious wrestling match last week with the almond ‘feta cheese’, and BTW, the result was pretty tasty – it was just the blistered thumbs that haunted me. The ‘cheese’ did have a very strong almond flavor that seemed to diminish after a couple of days. But it was tangy and tasty enough that I bought more almonds. While putting them away I noticed that the previous almonds were smaller, dark, and dry looking. This new purchase is light-colored and fatter.  The ‘cheese’ is definitely worth another try. 

   Dreams of a rich nut-based pumpkin pie have been swirling in my head. In the meantime I had raw cashews and sweet potatoes on hand. Well, why not? I soaked the cashews for a good long time and loved the fact that they come without skins! Also I have an adorable 5-inch springform pan that was in need of a good recipe. It worked out very well. But as you can tell from the ingredients that although everything is on the ‘healthy, good for you list’, this is a pretty rich dessert. I plan to try it again using eight small individual-serving-size ceramic ramekins. I picture those topped with a spoonful of chopped nuts that are glazed with a tiny bit of agave and cinnamon. 

   When using sweet potatoes as a baking ingredient a soft smooth puree works best for these recipes. I achieve this by boiling a few whole, well-scrubbed sweet potatoes until a knife slides in easily. I pour off the water (sometimes saving this orange colored liquid in a jar for other uses) and leave the potatoes to cool in the pot with the lid on. That way they steam in the residual heat. When they are cool they go through a ricer, sometimes called a food press, the kind used for making your own baby food. And sometimes they wait in the refrigerator overnight before being pureed. 

   The ingredients that are noted ‘slightly warm’ were passed briefly through the microwave. You want them to blend and almost melt together. 

Sweet Potato Pie ‘Cheesecake’ Ingredients:
1 cup raw cashews, soaked for 24 hours (1 1/3 cups expanded)
2 Tbsp agave syrup
1 tsp pure Mexican vanilla
2 Tbsp coconut oil, slightly warm
2/3 cup sweet potato puree, slightly warm
16 drops liquid stevia sweetener
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground allspice
1 Tbsp tapioca starch or arrowroot starch 

Grease your baking pan/ramkins with coconut oil. The ‘batter’ is prepared in a blender. 

Drain the water from the cashews. If they have been refrigerated then warm them in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Dump them into the blender jar. Add the agave syrup and the vanilla. Start the blender and begin to break down the cashews, pulsing and pausing to scrape down the sides as needed. 

When the nuts are in very small pieces then add the warm coconut oil, sweet potato puree, stevia, and sea salt. Dial up the blender speed and begin to puree the mixture; again pulsing and pausing to scrape down the sides as needed. 

Finally add the allspice and tapioca starch to the blender jar and finish pureeing for a few minutes until the mixture is smooth, thick, and fluffy. Pour and scrape the mixture into your baking pan. Smooth the top with the back of a spoon. 

A 5-inch Springform Pan

A 5-inch Springform Pan

 

Turn the oven temperature to 350*F (180C) and place the pan in the oven. Set the timer for 30 minutes. The air in the batter will expand and the mixture will rise somewhat during baking similar to a standard cheesecake. The dessert will be cooked when a very thin knife slips easily in and comes out clean. If there is wet, uncooked mixture on the knife then put it back for about 10 more minutes. Then turn off the oven and leave it in the oven to cool for an hour. Remove from the oven. When the pan is no longer warm you may place it in the refrigerator to chill. 

It Really Looks Like a 'Cheesecake'!!

It Really Looks Like a 'Cheesecake'!!

 

It unmolded neatly onto a plate just like you would expect from a cheesecake. How sweet is that? 

Mom

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