This weekend I wanted to create my own cranberry orange cheesecake for the upcoming holidays. This is the time of year fresh organic cranberries are abundant in the co-ops and health food stores. The cranberries we buy in Vermont are native to Eastern Massachusetts where they grow in bogs. They are harvested in October so it’s a great time to be eating them. To learn more about them, CLICK HERE. Cranberries are also great in smoothies with oranges! I even make delicious green smoothies with cranberry and orange combinations! A super autumn breakfast!
My own Cranberry Orange Cheesecake
This recipe is part of my small but growing collection. These new recipes will be for sale online when we build our website. Half the proceeds will be going to the Farm Sanctuary to help rescued farm animals. I’ll have awesome detailed instructions and photos for each recipe as well as photos of the animals that will be benefitting from my project. Please keep checking back for our progress updates :-)
Joyce’s Notes: This turned out to be delicious! There is no cultured nut cheese but it’s still quite flavorful. I used cacao butter (raw unsweetened white chocolate) and a bit of coconut oil to get it firm. I was hoping for a more ‘white chocolate’ flavor but the tanginess of the oranges and cranberries were dominant over the cacao butter. That’s OK as it still tasted very rich and decadent. We also liked the crust a lot which was made with dried cranberries.
Almond Beet Ravioli with Boursin Macadamia cheese and a Moroccan Carrot Orange Sauce over kelp noodles.
This is also the time of year for an abundance of beets in Vermont. So you may see a few more beet ravioli recipes in the upcoming months on my blog. We just love them! :-)
I got this idea from a really great blog called “What the Hell Does a Vegan Eat Anyways”. However I did change it up a bit. The almond flavorings and boursin macadamia nut cheese are my own ideas and I used kelp noodles instead of zucchini noodles.
For the beets I used red and golden beets that were sliced on my mandoline and cut into squares. I marinated them in almond oil and a little sea salt for about half the day to soften.
I used fermented/cultured macadamia nut cheese as the ravioli filling. To see details on making fermented nut cheese you can view my St Patty’s day post. CLICK HERE. (it’s towards the end). I flavored about one cup of the macadamia nut cheese with:
- 3/4 tablespoon of nutritional yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon of onion powder
- sea salt to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg
The Moroccan carrot orange sauce was adapted from Gabriel Cousen’s book, Rainbow Green Live-Food Cuisine.
Here’s my version:
- 2 cups of carrots chopped
- 2 tomatoes (medium sized)
- 1 medium orange
- 1/3 cup of olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon of allspice
- 1 1/4 teaspoon of cumin (or more to taste)
- 1 teaspoon of sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
Blend in the Vitamix until smooth.
I topped the dish with almond slices mixed with almond oil and a little sea salt. Note: almond oil is not raw but I only used small amounts as seasoning for this dish.
Joyce’s Notes: This was a delicious dinner on Saturday night. Scott really loved the beet ravioli marinated in almond oil and the cheese filling together. He also really liked the almond slices on top. I wasn’t sure how this was all going to turn out. So I was delighted when my very fussy raw food Husband was calling this one a winner! :-)
The Moroccan carrot orange sauce was good but not a five-star recipe. With a little tweaking it could be excellent. I still think it went nicely with the dish as it was subtle and didn’t over power or clash with any of the other flavors. It was actually a nice compliment to the highly flavorful macadamia nut cheese. I used the leftover sauce on Sunday for a delicious kale salad.
Next time I might just leave out the kelp noodles since the dish didn’t need them. (they are neutral in flavor). I didn’t mind eating them mixed in the sauce but Scott gave me his ;-)
An experiment for the upcoming Holidays:
Savory Sage Croquettes. Recipe is Adapted by Gabriel Cousins and found in his book, Rainbow Green Live-Food Cuisine.
Back in August, someone brought a very similar batch of sage croquettes to the local potluck and I thought they were extremely tasty! I could have eaten a whole bunch! I never did get the recipe but found out that something very similar was in one of my books! So I had to try it out for the upcoming holidays.
Here’s my adapted recipe based on Gabriel’s:
- 1 cup of almonds, soaked overnight
- 1 cup of brazil nuts, unsoaked
- 1/2 cup of pine nuts
- 1/8 cup of lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon of sea salt
- 2 tablespoons of fresh sage, minced
- 1 tablespoon of fresh oregano, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon of dried sage
- 1/2 to 1 tablespoon of minced leek
- cracked pepper to taste
Process the almonds, brazils and pine nuts until very well incorporated in the food processor using the S blade. This should take a few minutes to get it homogenized. Then add the rest of the ingredients and process until well incorporated.
Joyce’s Notes: I thought these were soooo tasty and flavorful! Scott wasn’t thrilled with them but thought they were OK. I thought they tasted just like traditional stuffing with the leeks, sage and oregano. And I love stuffing!!
Gabriel’s original recipe called for olive oil which I did use. However they did turn out to be a little too oily. Scott didn’t like that aspect but I was fine with it. I’m going to make these again without the oil as the ground pine nuts will still release some oil keeping them moist. I might also roll them in almond flour next time.
Give these a try if you love authentic holiday stuffing (or dressing as they call it overseas in some countries). Make it first before you bring it to a Thanksgiving dinner to make sure it’s not too oily for you. I think it’s always best to ‘test run’ raw vegan recipes before bringing them to important family dinners :-)
Here’s a photo of the croquettes before going into the dehydrator. This recipe should have made 12 but I kept eating bites right from the food processor as it was soooo good :-)
PETA’s “Dairy Dump” in Burlington, Vermont this past Friday!
PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) members were on the corner of Church and Main Street to enlighten people about the inhumane treatment of cows on dairy farms.
A new PETA undercover investigation inside a Land O'Lakes supplier facility in Pennsylvania has revealed routine neglect and cruelty to cows who are milked for the company's products. CLICK HERE TO SEE THE DETAILS. This is very sad but unfortunately it’s a very grim reality for almost all dairy cows on factory farms.
The lovely woman above is Virginia Fort who is a Campaign Coordinator for PETA. It was a pleasure meeting and talking with her this past Friday. She had a small video screen attached to her which was showing footage of the Land O’Lakes undercover investigation which you can see on the link I enclosed above.
I’m so thankful for PETA and all that they do for animals. Keep up the great work!
Thank you Virginia for coming to Burlington!
And here are a few late October Vermont scenes. The leaves are almost off the trees but there are still a few colors left. I love the clouds and lighting this time of year in New England. Winter is on its way!
The above shots are views of Richmond, Vermont
The above is Camel’s Hump taken off of Libby’s Lookout this weekend. Sunday was a gorgeous day to be outside in the woods!
Well that’s all for now! Have a happy and healthy week and do come back again!