HOW TO MAKE A RHUBARB CHEESECAKE
For the base 2 tbsp coconut oil 300g (10 oz) vegan biscuits For the cheesecake mixture 80g (3oz) raw cacao butter 240ml (8fl oz) almond milk or any plant milk 180ml (6fl oz) maple syrup 300g (10 oz) raw cashews, soaked overnight 2 tsp vanilla extract 4-5 tsp freshly grated ginger 2 tbsp lemon juice For the topping 200g (7oz) fresh rhubarb 2 tbsp coconut sugar or maple syrup (optional)
tsp of vanilla extract Juice of 1 orange 1 tsp cornflour Chopped pistachios (optional)
20cm (77/ 8") round springform tin Baking paper Food processor Large baking dish Blender A slow Sunday lunch calls for an indulgent dessert that looks as delicious as it tastes. Whether you’re going for a full Easter roast for the next bank holiday or have something lower key on the cards, this ginger, white chocolate and rhubarb cheesecake won’t disappoint. There’s a moreish balance of sweet and sharp flavours in there, plus creamy and crunchy texture, while the splash of hot pink seasonal rhubarb gives this dessert its showstopper appeal.
For a firmer texture for the cheesecake mixture, use full fat coconut milk – almond milk renders the mixture quite delicate. And, use gluten-free vegan biscuits for the base to make a gluten-free version of this dessert.
01 First, line the bottom of the springform tin with a circle of baking paper and cut out a long rectangle to line the sides of the tin with. Affix the long strip of paper to the inner sides of the springform tin. This is especially crucial if you aren’t using a non-stick tin.
02 To make the cheesecake base, start by melting the coconut oil gently in a small pot.
03 Grind the biscuits in a food processor until you achieve a delicate crumb.
04 Add the melted coconut oil and process until the mixture sticks together. If it’s too dry add a few teaspoons of almond milk, but let the biscuits and oil sit together for a few minutes before you judge. You may find it helpful to transfer the mixture to a large bowl and play with it a bit before you decide if any more moisture is needed.
05 Transfer the mixture to the lined tin and press it into the base really well, creating a compact biscuit base. Use the bottom of a glass to ensure the base is smooth, even and well bound. Place in the fridge.
06 For the roasted rhubarb, heat up the oven to 190ºC (375ºF).
07 Chop up the rhubarb into small 2.5cm (1") pieces.
08 Place the rhubarb in a large baking dish, then toss in the sugar or maple syrup, orange juice and vanilla extract. To give the rhubarb more sharpness, leave out the sugar.
09 Roast in the oven until soft, for about 10 minutes. Thicker stalks may take longer, approximately 12-15 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
10 To thicken the juice so it stays on top of the cake, place the juice in a small pot and mix cornflour and a teaspoon of water in a small cup or saucer. Place the pot with the juice on a low heat, mix the dissolved cornflour in, and allow both to come to a gentle simmer, stirring the whole time. Simmer for a few minutes to thicken and allow the mixture to cool.
11 To make the cheesecake mixture, start by melting the cacao butter gently over a water bath. Allow it to cool down a little before adding it to the mixture.
12 Put the plant milk, maple syrup and drained and rinsed cashews in a blender. If you don’t have a powerful blender, you can do this in two batches to get the cashews blended super smooth and creamy.
13 Add melted cacao butter, vanilla, ginger and lemon juice to the blender until you get a super smooth mixture. Adjust the sweetness and spiciness to taste.
14 Pour the cheesecake mixture over the set base and place the tin in the fridge overnight, or for at least eight hours, to set.
15 Once set, top with the roasted rhubarb pieces, the thickened juice and the chopped pistachios. Keep refrigerated.