Thursday, May 26, 2011

Recipe: Vegan Blueberry Citrus Cheesecake with Oat Crust

I've been digging the combination of blueberries and citrus fruits lately. I love the marriage of flavors, and I love the contrast of sharp oranges and yellows against the blue-purple of the berries.

In fact, it's a perfect marriage! One partner is mellow and well-grounded (or, at least, closer to the ground) like fresh, plump blueberries; and the other is full of bright energy and has her head in the clouds (or, at least, closer to the clouds) like fresh, juicy citrus fruits.

Naturally, it didn't take long for me to develop a serious craving for a cheesecake to consummate the union: a thin, luscious layer of orange cheesecake is stacked on top of a thick, creamy layer of blueberry cheesecake and a thick oat crust. It smelled so good baking, I couldn't wait for it to chill completely, and I sliced into it before the center had fully set. Oh, well. You'll see a bit of a whipped cream-like texture in the center layer in the photos, but rest assured, it set beautifully when I left it in the refrigerator for a few more hours!

Vegan Blueberry Citrus Cheesecake with Oat Crust

Crust Ingredients:

1 c. unbleached or whole wheat flour
1 c. oats, finely ground (I used my Magic Bullet, but you can use a food processor or blender)
1/2 c. cane juice crystals or vegan sugar (I use Zulka)
1 c. vegan stick margarine (I use Nucoa)

Filling Ingredients:

1 - 14 oz. package firm or extra firm tofu (not silken)
1/2 c. vegan soy yogurt (plain or vanilla)

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/4 c. frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed

1 - 8oz. tub vegan cream cheese (I use Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese)
1/8 c. egg replacer powder

1 c. cane juice crystals or vegan sugar

1/2 c. fresh or frozen blueberries (thaw first if frozen)

OPTIONAL: 1 T. fresh orange zest

Crust Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix flour, oats, and cane juice crystals or sugar. Add stick margarine and mix with a fork or pastry blender until crumbly.

Press mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Use a fork to make small holes throughout the crust, to help it bake evenly. Bake for 15 minutes, remove from oven, then let cool completely.

Filling Directions:

Put tofu, yogurt, lemon juice,and orange juice into a large blender pitcher or food processor and blend until creamy. (I use the blender attachment on my Magic Bullet.) Add cream cheese and blend until smooth.

Add cane juice crystals or sugar and egg replacer powder. Blend until sugar crystals are dissolved.

Remove approximately one-third of filling. Add orange zest, if desired, and mix well. Set aside.

Using a blender or food processor, chop blueberries and gently fold into remaining two-thirds of filling. Don't over-mix, or your cheesecake will come out more gray-colored than purple.

Pour blueberry filling over baked oat crust and spread evenly.

Optional Note: At this point, you may refrigerate the crust and first layer for 30 minutes to make spreading the orange layer easier. 

Pour orange layer over blueberry layer and spread evenly.

Baking Directions:

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Wrap bottom of spring-form pan with several layers of foil. (These photos are from my Vegan Peanut Butter S'Mores Cheesecake tutorial.)

Set wrapped spring-form into bottom of a deep, larger baking pan and fill with boiling water. This water bath will bake the cheesecake from the sides and result in more even cooking.

Zip up your heat-proof foil suit and use great caution when moving the set-up into the oven. Remember, you just pouring boiling water into that pan. Watch for "sloshing," and please be careful!

I don't want anyone calling me, scolding and scalded.

Bake until cheesecake begins to pull away from edges of pan - about 55 to 60 minutes. Don't let it brown!

CAREFULLY remove pan from oven. Let stand for 15 minutes, then gently remove spring-form from larger pan and peel away foil. Chill for four or more hours before serving. The longer, the better.

Garnish with orange or tangerine slices and blueberries.

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1 comment:

  1. Awesome looking dessert- love the favor combinations!