Citrus Cranberry Cardamom Cheesecake (no bake!)

Looking for a sophisticated vegan dessert option? Look no further! Seasonal flavors come together perfectly in this no-bake cheesecake.

4 1/2 cups of cashews, soaked in cold water for at least 8 hours or overnight

1 cup pitted dates (if hard, soak in hot water for 20 mins - 1 hour)

1 cup raw pecans

1 cup raw walnuts

1 cup maple syrup

1 cup melted coconut oil

zest from one orange (tangerine, grapefruit, or mandarin work too)

zest from one lemon

3/4 cup orange juice (tangerine, grapefruit, or mandarin work too)

1/2 cup lemon juice

1/4 - 1/2 tsp cardamom depending on how much you like cardamom

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 - 1 ½ cup fresh cranberry sauce (the same recipe you use for Thanksgiving will work for this), strained through a sieve

Make the cheesecake crust. Add pitted dates, pecans, and walnuts to a food processor. Pulse until only small pieces of nuts remain.

Prepare a 9 or 10 inch springform pan. Place a square piece of parchment 1 inch larger than the base on the base and then secure the pan. This will ensure easy removal of cheesecake.

Press the crust in an even layer into the springform pan. Place the prepared crust, covered, into your fridge to chill.

Drain and rinse soaking cashews. Add to a high-powered blender. Add maple syrup, melted coconut oil, orange zest and juice, lemon zest and juice, salt, vanilla, and cardamom to the blender with the cashews. Blend until smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides when necessary. Taste to ensure cardamom flavor shines through, but is not overpowering.

Pour cheesecake over the crust and smooth top with rubber spatula. Gently tap cheesecake on the countertop to encourage any air bubbles to the surface. Cover and place in the fridge to set for 6 hours (your cheesecake will hold up in the fridge for 5 days) or in the freezer for 1 hour (if tightly covered, you can store your cheesecake in the freezer for up to 3 months, thaw in fridge before consuming).

After chilling for 30 minutes, strain cranberry sauce through a fine mesh strainer (it may help to warm the cranberry sauce over a low heat or in the microwave). Pour over your cheesecake and return to the fridge or freezer to finish setting. You can marble in the cranberry sauce with a spatula for a dramatic effect.

You can decorate further with sugared cranberries, fresh herbs, edible flowers, nuts, or dried fruit!

GF V veg DF

Yield: 16 servings