Hazelnut Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake

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THE RED FLOWERS MUST NOT BE WASTED!! Therefore, I made a chocolate flavoured thing, because I’ve always associated red with chocolate.

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Haha, that was my thought when I bought a bunch of flowers a while back, I was determined to take lots of pretty photos with desserts, of them.

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I thought, I’ve made heaps of chocolate stuff, I haven’t made a cheesecake, or so I thought.

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(Yeah, I probably made those before but forgot…)

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But for some reason, I always wanted to try a cheesecake that’s truly chocolate, and what I mean by that is, the cream has to be coconut cos I love the taste of that, and makes it feel like it’s truly chocolate.

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I thought of using walnuts and almonds as base, but sadly those were infested by evil moths. (Have you had that happen?)

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So yes, I found that I still had some hazelnuts, so that shall be it!

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This has to be the best ever chocolate cheesecake I’ve made, because it is truly amazing. I was surprised it didn’t take long to harden!

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So yes, with the full fat coconut milk, I used Thai Kitchen brand. I think the best result for separating the cream from the clear liquid is putting it for a couple of days.

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Remember that if you’re using high speed blender like Vitamix, be sure that you pulse, which means turn it on for a very short while, then stop, then again, so never leave it on for long. You don’t want to make the nuts too ground up.

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I find that when nuts are ground too finely, it doesn’t give it a satisfying crunchiness that comes when you bite on the crust.

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Finally, the topping is optional, but adds a strong vanilla taste, which I love. Don’t worry about making it too sweet cos the cake is, you won’t really know the difference.

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Hazelnut Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake

Crust
3/4 cup roasted hazelnuts
2 tablespoons oat flour
7 pitted dates (about 1/4 cup tightly packed)
1 tablespoon unsweetened coconut milk (or almond milk)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground vanilla powder

Filling
1/2 cup cashews, pre-soaked
1 cup full fat coconut milk cream (from refrigerated full fat coconut milk, clear liquid discarded)
2 tablespoons melted vegan dark chocolate chips (eg Enjoy Life)
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons cacao powder
1 tablespoon dark cocoa powder
1 1/2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Topping (optional)
1 tablespoon full fat coconut milk cream (from refrigerated full fat coconut milk, clear liquid discarded)
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon pure maple syrup
1/4 teaspoon ground vanilla powder
Shaved dark chocolate

Preparation: Be sure to refrigerate a can of full fat coconut milk in the fridge for a couple of days, the coconut cream part should thicken and harden, scoop that out into a bowl and drain out the clear liquid. There, you have your full fat coconut milk cream.

Please soak the cashews in water for at least 30 minutes, but an hour is preferred.

Crust: Add the hazelnuts, oat flour, dates, coconut milk, vanilla extract and vanilla powder in a blender or food processor. If using blender, pulse a few times until it has been roughly chopped, then use a spoon to stir it around, then pulse some more until it becomes sticky. If using food processor, simply grind until it becomes a sticky mixture.

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Pour the crust mixture on a medium sized (7 inch) springform pan, or other pan of choice.

Press the mixture firmly to the bottom, be sure to even out the surface with a spoon so there are no lumpy parts.

Put the pan in the freezer while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

Filling: Drain the water from the cashews, and add it in the blender, along with the prepared full fat coconut milk cream, coconut oil, cacao powder, dark cocoa powder (for added darkness if desired, otherwise add another tablespoon cacao powder), pure maple syrup and vanilla extract.

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Heat the vegan chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl for a minute, then stir until it completely dissolves, and add it in the mixture.

Blend on full speed until it becomes completely smooth. Scoop it out on the springform pan, be sure to scoop the last tiny little bit of chocolate filling. Swoosh the pan around to even out the top, then use a flat spatula or spoon to make the top nice and flat.

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Put the pan in the freezer for an hour or so until it hardens, then cut into slices and serve with shaved chocolate on top or any other desired topping.

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If you want to add the vanilla topping, combine the coconut milk cream, vanilla extract, maple syrup and vanilla powder in a bowl. Stir with a small spoon vigorously until everything is smooth, and no lumps are found.

Use a spoon to drizzle the vanilla topping across the cheesecake once it has hardened in the freezer, then use a knife to chop a block of semi-sweet cooking chocolate in to tiny shreds, and sprinkle it on top.

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Note: The dark cocoa powder is really to give it more of a darker chocolate colour, but is not necessary for you to use.

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Feel free to simply use 3 tablespoons cacao powder, or 3 tablespoons cocoa powder, the option is totally up to you. Also, feel free to substitute maple syrup with agave.

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Also, if you don’t want to use the ground vanilla powder, feel free to scrape the beans off vanilla seeds. That would work too!

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Hazelnut Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake
Serves: 4
 

Ingredients
Crust
  • ¾ cup roasted hazelnuts
  • 2 tablespoons oat flour
  • 7 pitted dates (about ¼ cup tightly packed)
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened coconut milk (or almond milk)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground vanilla powder
Filling
  • ½ cup cashews, pre-soaked
  • 1 cup full fat coconut milk cream (from refrigerated full fat coconut milk, clear liquid discarded)
  • 2 tablespoons melted vegan dark chocolate chips (eg Enjoy Life)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 1 tablespoon dark cocoa powder
  • 1½ tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Topping (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon full fat coconut milk cream (from refrigerated full fat coconut milk, clear liquid discarded)
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon pure maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon ground vanilla powder
  • Shaved dark chocolate

Instructions
  1. Preparation: Be sure to refrigerate a can of full fat coconut milk in the fridge for a couple of days, the coconut cream part should thicken and harden, scoop that out into a bowl and drain out the clear liquid. There, you have your full fat coconut milk cream.
  2. Please soak the cashews in water for at least 30 minutes, but an hour is preferred.
  3. Crust: Add the hazelnuts, oat flour, dates, coconut milk, vanilla extract and vanilla powder in a blender or food processor. If using blender, pulse a few times until it has been roughly chopped, then use a spoon to stir it around, then pulse some more until it becomes sticky. If using food processor, simply grind until it becomes a sticky mixture.
  4. Pour the crust mixture on a medium sized (7 inch) springform pan, or other pan of choice.
  5. Press the mixture firmly to the bottom, be sure to even out the surface with a spoon so there are no lumpy parts.
  6. Put the pan in the freezer while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
  7. Filling: Drain the water from the cashews, and add it in the blender, along with the prepared full fat coconut milk cream, coconut oil, cacao powder, dark cocoa powder (for added darkness if desired, otherwise add another tablespoon cacao powder), pure maple syrup and vanilla extract.
  8. Heat the vegan chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl for a minute, then stir until it completely dissolves, and add it in the mixture.
  9. Blend on full speed until it becomes completely smooth. Scoop it out on the springform pan, be sure to scoop the last tiny little bit of chocolate filling. Swoosh the pan around to even out the top, then use a flat spatula or spoon to make the top nice and flat.
  10. Put the pan in the freezer for an hour or so until it hardens, then cut into slices and serve with shaved chocolate on top or any other desired topping.
  11. If you want to add the vanilla topping, combine the coconut milk cream, vanilla extract, maple syrup and vanilla powder in a bowl. Stir with a small spoon vigorously until everything is smooth, and no lumps are found.
  12. Use a spoon to drizzle the vanilla topping across the cheesecake once it has hardened in the freezer, then use a knife to chop a block of semi-sweet cooking chocolate in to tiny shreds, and sprinkle it on top.


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