Christmas may be over, but that doesn’t mean we’re done feasting.
From leftovers on Boxing Day to New Year’s Eve parties, the demand for favorite dishes and treats is still high.
Here’s what some kiwis are cooking this time of year – including this delicious plant-based cheesecake from celebrity chef Chelsea Winter. The recipe adorns the cover of her Supergood cookbook.
* Recipe: Spicy Lamb Hand Pies with Quick Tomato Sauce
* Recipe: Caramelized Onions & Blue Cheese Rolls
* Recipe: blueberry cream cheese squares
Cheesecake with a jelly tip
“I can’t tell you how epic this recipe is,” says Winter. “It was one of the first ideas that came to mind as dessert for the book, and it took me many, many iterations and tries to get it right.
“It’s a treat for the eyes and the palate, and I bet it will be an absolute treat for any special occasion that deserves such a great centerpiece. They are dairy-free desserts that will change your life, but you certainly don’t have to be dairy-free to enjoy them. “
Preparation time: 1 hour plus 6 hours soaking time and 7 hours for freezing.
To make it gluten free, use a GF biscuit.
Ingredients – raspberry jelly topping
- 500g bag of frozen raspberries
- ½ cup of powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons of lemon juice
- 1-2 teaspoons raspberry essence (depending on the raspberry taste)
- 4 tbsp chia seeds (see corn starch, see tips)
Ingredients – base
- 150g plant-based cookies (I used Nice cookies)
- ⅓ cup of desiccated coconut
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder
- 3 tbsp coconut oil, melted
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
Ingredients – creamy vanilla filling
- 3 cups of raw cashew nuts
- 1 cup full-fat coconut cream
- 1¼ cups powdered sugar (or less if you like it less sweet)
- ⅓ cup of lemon juice
- ½ cup coconut oil, melted
- 1 tbsp vanilla bean paste (or use 2 tbsp extract)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Zest of 2 lemons
Ingredients – chocolate topping
- 100g chopped milk-free chocolate, plus extra to sprinkle
- 100ml coconut cream
- 1-2 bowls of fresh raspberries (optional)
- For the filling, place the cashew nuts in a large heat-resistant bowl and cover with just boiled water. Leave on for 6 hours (or overnight is even better). Drain and rinse.
- For the raspberry jelly topping, put the berries, sugar, lemon juice and essence in a saucepan with a good pinch of salt and simmer over a medium heat for about 10 minutes until they are a little reduced. Remove from heat and stir in the chia seeds. Set aside to cool completely.
- Line the bottom and sides of a small round springform pan (21–23 cm) with baking paper. How small the can determines how big the cheesecake is.
- Put the basic ingredients in a food processor and beat on a high level until a nice, fine crumb is formed (tilting the food processor sometimes helps to mix better). Tilt into the mold and press flat into an even layer.
- For the creamy vanilla filling, put the drained cashew nuts together with the remaining ingredients, except for the lemon peel, in a blender (or a good food processor, preferably a blender). Blend on high speed until mixture is silky smooth. (With a food processor, this can take a while, depending on the performance – even more than 5 minutes.) Scrape the sides a few times to avoid lumps and fold in the lemon peel. Scrape it into the can on the top of the floor and flatten it.
- Freeze for 1–2 hours until it is a little firmer, then top with the raspberry topping. Cover again and place in the freezer for 4-5 hours or overnight to complete the setting.
- For the chocolate topping, heat the chocolate and coconut cream in a Pyrex or ceramic bowl in the microwave for 1 minute. Stir until smooth. Let cool a little, then pour over the frozen cheesecake and smooth out. Cover until serving and either freeze or refrigerate.
- Thaw the cheesecake completely before serving (preferably in the refrigerator). Top with fresh raspberries as desired. I also like to sprinkle some extra chopped chocolate on top to add crispness. Will keep in the refrigerator for a few days after thawing, or you can freeze the cheesecake (undecorated) for up to a month – just make sure it’s tightly closed so it doesn’t taste like it was in the freezer.
- I use a really good blender to whip the creamy filling mixture and it turns out silky smooth. See how you are doing – you can use a good food processor if you need to, just process it forever. You could also use a ball, but you need to do this in stacks.
- If you don’t have chia seeds, you can stir a slurry of 3 tablespoons of cornstarch with 3 tablespoons of water through the cooked raspberry mixture to make it jammy and thick.
- If the bottom seems too crumbly, add 2 dates soaked in warm water for 5 minutes.
Laura Manu from Pakuranga loves this cold salad because it is quick and easy, inexpensive to prepare and “a crowd-pleaser”. She adds, “It’s also a great way to get some vegetables into kids!”
- 1 head of raw broccoli
- ½ red onion
- ⅓ cup of sour cream
- ⅓ cup of mayonnaise
- Handful of dried cranberries
- ⅓ cup of grated cheese
- 6 slices of bacon
- Cut the bacon strips into pieces and fry them.
- While the bacon is searing, cut the broccoli into small pieces.
- Mix all ingredients in a large bowl.
- Serve and enjoy. Perfect as a summer side salad.
Anne and John Griffin of Hamilton say this piece is great served with coffee or served on its own as a dessert. It can be kept tightly closed in the refrigerator and can also be frozen. “So good to have something special at hand!”
- ½ cup whole sultanas
- ½ cup dried apricot cubes
- ½ cup dark chocolate buttons
- ½ cup of diced dry strawberries / cranberries.
- ½ cup of whole almonds
- ½ cup whole pistachios (or omit and use more almonds)
- 2 cups of dry long coconut
- 1x 395g can of Highlander condensed milk (not low-fat)
- Pre heat the oven to 180 degrees celcius.
- Mix the ingredients together in a large bowl. If it feels a little wet, add some dried coconut.
- Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and spoon in the mixture until it is evenly distributed. The disc should sit about 1 cm high.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Wait until it is completely cold before cutting or it will crumble.
- After cooling, cut into slices / squares and serve with good coffee.
Do you have a favorite dish that always comes out this time of year? As part of our summer coverage, we’re looking for reader recipes. It could be something creative to use up leftovers or your quick and easy recipes for barbecues with family and friends.
Submit the recipe, along with a picture of the finished dish, to [email protected] and you could win one of 30 Pacific Harvest Raw Nori Snack Packs plus their NZ organic seaweed salt for grilling worth $ 20. Visit www.pacificharvest.co.nz for more informations. Please include your address and a few sentences as to why you love the recipe.