An idea I’ve contemplated for a while is posting various things beyond videogames in this space–particularly as I have other blogs for which I write; which was never particularly the plan when I started this blog (there was no plan, to be honest). The idea was to include recipes (I cook and bake fairly frequently) and a gendered analysis of various other media (films, advertisements, novels, comic books, et cetera). I will appropriately tag these posts.
Therefore, I present to you a recipe I tried yesterday, by mixing together three separate recipes. Vegan ‘Nutella’ cheesecake. The dietary concerns were because I was with one friend who is vegan.
First, for the crust, I opted to buy a spelt crust. Typical store-bought 9″. On to the other bits:
Ingredients were as follows:
2 cups raw hazelnuts
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup vegan sugar
1/4 cup of cocoa of preference
4 tablespoons canola oil
8 tablespoons hazelnut milk (can be subbed with any non-dairy milk–I figured hazelnut made sense for this recipe)
I used and altered the recipe I found here.
Instructions are simple. Putting the hazelnuts in a food processor, I ground them until they were as fine as they could be with the particular processor I was using. Then I slowly added the other ingredients and let it grind a bit more. I didn’t time this section, as it seemed to be self-evident when the ingredients were well mixed.
The original recipe called for much less milk, but I wanted to be sure this would be creamy, so added a bit more. I figured because I was using hazelnut milk, it would also not detract much from the flavor or intent, so had no concerns there.
I may make some on my own again, outside of using it for this recipe. The hazelnuts were the most expensive ingredient, but everything else was either in the kitchen or easily, cheaply obtainable. If you have concerns about real Nutella having hydrogenated oil, non-vegan products, or any other such things, this is a great substitute.
One 14 oz package of silken tofu *
One small tub of Tofutti’s Better Than Cream Cheese
2/3 cup vegan sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla (or almond) extract
2 tablespoons all-purpose baking flour (I’ve also used corn starch in the past)
The * note is to make sure you drain the tofu for at least an hour beforehand. In case you are unfamiliar with this process, I normally just put the tofu on a plate, press another plate on top, and weigh it down with heavy books. Tofu tends to retain a lot of water, so to have something a bit less messy, this is highly recommended.
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Here you want to blend the tofu until it’s nice and smooth. I used a food processor; I’ve also hand-whisked this in the past. After the lumps are gone, put in the Better Than Cream Cheese until they are blended. Afterward, it’s just a manner of blending in the rest of the ingredients.
Once these two parts were done, I just whisked them together until the mixture was smooth, and the color was even. The picture below, by Rachel Renee Photography, shows what the remnants of said mixture resembled.
Evenly filling the 9″ pie crust, I placed it in the oven for 45 minutes.
After it was done, I recommend cooling it somewhere between 1 – 2 hours before placing it in the fridge. Following this, ideally, you would let it sit overnight and enjoy it the following day. This tends to be rather important if you want a firm, consistent recipe. Otherwise it will be a bit runny.
Rachel, Rachael, and I were a bit impatient, and it passed our taste tests. Obviously, this is a very rich recipe, so smaller portions are recommended. Perhaps with some of the hazelnut milk you probably have left.
The final product, again, photo by Rachel Renee: