In the spirit of Shavuot (the Jewish holiday when it’s customary to eat dairy), I made a cheeseless cheesecake this week, using Tofutti cream cheese. The recipe, on Chabad’s website, has been circulating for the past few weeks, but it’s been around for a while.
It’s become my go-to cheesecake recipe for a number of reasons. I’m lactose-intolerant, and so are some of my family members. Also, the recipe is simple to prepare (always a bonus), and it tastes and looks good.
But a prepared crust? No. Well, once. But that was an exception.
Now, instead of a prepared crust, I use a great, easy recipe from The Green Door, a vegetarian restaurant in Ottawa that has fabulous, nourishing food.
The crust is part of a recipe for Cocoa-Banana Pie that I found in my Green Door Cookbook. It’s called Rice Crust, because it’s made with rice flour. But I find more people comment on (and like) the nuttiness of the crust, which provides a nice contrast to the cheesecake. Actually, I think it “makes” the cake. But arranging fruit on top in a pretty pattern also helps.
To make the cheeseless cheesecake, go to http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/435069/jewish/Cheeseless-Cheesecake.htm. But to make it extra-special, substitute the crust below for the ready-made one in the original recipe, and top the cake with cut fruit once it has started to cool, pressing the fruit into the cheesecake.
Gluten-Free Nut Crust (aka “Rice Crust”), Reprinted with permission from The Green Door Cookbook
¾ c. raw almonds
¾ c. brown rice flour
1/3 c. canola oil
1/3 c. maple syrup
Pinch of salt
¼ tsp. cinnamon
In a food processor, grind the almonds until they resemble bread crumbs. In a bowl, mix ground almonds, rice flour, salt and cinnamon. In another bowl, mix oil with maple syrup. Combine wet and dry ingredients. Press into an oiled and floured 9 ½ or 10-inch pie plate. Bake 5 minutes (10 max!) at 350. (The cookbook suggests a baking time of about 25 minutes, until lightly browned, for a recipe with a no-bake filling.)
Add filling, and proceed with recipe.