I went to Hangawi with my family in New York City a week ago. I have to say, best vegan/vegetarian food ever. The portion sizes were really small, but the food was just phenomenal. Anyway, I’m not trying to write a restaurant review. The reason I am bringing this restaurant up is because that night, for dessert, I had a soy tofu cheesecake that was made in-house. Oh my god, I cannot even describe to you how delicious it was, especially for a vegan cake! I ended up having two despite the large dinner I had already had 😛 And, I’ve been craving to have another slice ever since so I decided to experiment with making my own version of a homemade tofu “cheesecake”! I wasn’t sure how this would come out, but man, was it delicious. I made a raspberry flavored “cheesecake” because I just love that fruit. Ah, this recipe is to die for honestly. I made this cake for a family dinner. Everyone loved it, which was surprising! And the guests didn’t even believe it was vegan and made out of tofu! When I told them, my mom’s friend first reacted with hesitation, afraid that it wouldn’t taste that good. She told me after eating it that she loved the crust, the creaminess, the texture, and the sweetness. Both her husband and her as well as my parents agreed that it wasn’t too sweet and just perfect that they wanted to surprise others with this cake without telling them first that it is vegan and made out of tofu. I couldn’t find a recipe online that I liked so I tried to make my own and used all natural sugars and increased the amount of cashews and tofu I used instead of using vegan cream cheeses or sour creams like most recipes. This way, the cake was healthier and more guilt-free – in fact, each slice is only ~ 200 calories, has a whooping 10g of protein, and only 2g of saturated fat, which is so low compared to your typical cakes or even store-bought vegan cakes! 🙂 Let me know if you like it! I was overjoyed when I had my slice and so were the guests so I really hope you are too.
** If you want to make a raw cake, follow steps 1 – 8 and then simply place your cake covered with some saran wrap into the fridge and it will harden and you can enjoy it in a few hours!
Yields 9 ” cake (~ 10 – 12 servings)
3/4 cup cashews, soaked either overnight or for about four hours till soft
3/4 block extra firm tofu (~12 oz)
1/2 – 3/4 cup agave nectar, honey, maple syrup, or barley malt syrup
1 cup fresh raspberries
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup almonds (you need a total of 1 cup nuts so I used half of almonds and half of walnuts, but you may choose to use your own blend of pecans, almonds, walnuts, etc.)
1/2 cup walnuts
12 deglet noor dates or 8 medjool dates, pitted
1 tsp cinnamon powder
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1. Soak the cashews overnight or for ~ 4 hours till they are expanded and soft.
2. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Soak the dates in some water for a few minutes.
3. In the meantime, as the dates are soaking, grind your choice of one cup of nuts, cinnamon powder, and coconut together.
4. Throw in the dates and grind the entire mixture again. It should become sticky.
5. Spray a 9″ inch pan slightly and press the nut and date mixture onto the pan to form a nice crust layer.
6. Drain the cashews. Blend them together with the tofu, your choice of natural sugar sweetener (I used agave nectar), vanilla extract, and lemon juice.
7. Once you have a creamy texture, throw in your raspberries and blend together.
8. Using a spatula, pour the blended “batter” into the pie crust and spread evenly, making a swirl pattern.
9. Bake for ~ 20 minutes at 350 F and if you want to bake the crust some more (but be sure to periodically check to make sure it doesn’t get burnt), you can bake for an additional 10 – 15 minutes at a lower temperature – I used 250 F.
10. Store in the refrigerator by covering with some saran wrap or in an air tight container.
11. The delicious raspberry “cheesecake” is ready to serve the next day! Just cut and yummmm!!