I’m a month into being very diligent about following a gluten-free and dairy-free diet. When in India, being gluten-free isn’t so hard, especially when you are as fortunate as I am to have an amazing woman who loves experimenting with food sending me a tiffin everyday. I get things like gluten-free puran puri (gari rotli as I knew it as a child, I learned of the name puran puri from Amdavadis), and gluten-free bhature for my cholle! [You can see some of the pictures of this food on my instagram]. But I have a sweet tooth, and there frankly aren’t that many options if you want “western” dessert that is both gluten-free and dairy-free. BUT here is where following food blogs and writing down recipes came to my rescue! I’m not sure where I got the original recipe from (and there are plenty of similar recipes), here’s the recipe for my dairy-free gluten-free (and paleo) no bake Strawberry Vanilla Cheesecake.
Don’t get put off by the fancy dietary adjectives – this cake was LOVED by all – especially those that don’t have my dietary restrictions.
This cake is very rich, and very delish. No preservatives, no sugar, full of nuts, fruit and other goodness. Not recommended for young children because of the honey content. [Friends who are nutritionists have told me that young children shouldn’t consume honey, but you can do your own research].
- 1/2 cup almonds (mine happened to be stored with some nutmeg, which added to the flavor of the almonds)
- 1/2 cup dates without the seeds
- pint of salt
- 1.5 cup cashews, soaked for at least 5 hours
- up to 4 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup honey (use another sweetener if you want it to be vegan)
- 1/3 cup coconut oil
- 1 cup of fresh strawberries (make sure they are dry, else they will create more a yoghurt texture)
- 1/3 cup of strawberries (to decorate)
- Grease your spring-form pan with a bit of coconut oil. If you don’t have a spring-form pan, use a pie plate.
- Place almonds and dates in a food processor with salt and blend together until well-mixed. Take a spoonful in your hand and make into a ball – if it holds, you are good to go. If it feels too dry, add another date or two.
- Spoon the mixture into the pan and press down to make into an even crust. Cover the base of the pan completely.
- Warm coconut oil and honey in a saucepan until liquified
- Blend cashews with coconut oil and honey, add vanilla extract and 2 tbsp of lemon juice on high speed until very smooth. Taste the mixture and add remaining lemon juice if needed.
- Pour half of the mixture from above onto the crust and smooth out with a spatula. Gently shake the pan like a sieve to smoothen out the bumps.
- Add the strawberries to the remaining mixture in your blender. Add more lemon juice per your taste and depending on the sweetness of the strawberries.
- Pour the mixture on top of the vanilla layer.
- Place in freezer for an hour or two for it to solidify.
Decorate & Serve
- Remove the cake from the freezer about 30 minutes before you want to serve it. Top it with fresh sliced strawberries or this strawberry topping.
- For easy cutting, run a smooth, sharp knife under hot water before using it to cut slices.
- Store leftovers in the fridge.