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Berry nice

25 January 2022
Be Good organics summer strawberry cheesecake

Sweeten up your summer days with these two delicious berry numbers. Words Buffy Ellen Photos Be Good Organics

Breaking news: berries are back!

We start with epically delicious, simple ice creams that are organic, affordable and super delicious treats for the whole family. They’re very versatile, too – I’ve used frozen blueberries and raspberries in my recipe, but any fruit will do. You can experiment with strawberries, mangos, bananas, pineapple or mix and match to create your own flavours.

I use a binder like cornflour, arrowroot or guar gum as the berries and coconut cream have a high water content. These elements help bind the fat particles with the water particles, reducing the iciness and increasing the creaminess.

Feel free to alter the sweetness of this recipe by increasing or decreasing the amount of sugar/sweetener you add. The fruit you choose will also impact your ice cream’s sweetness factor. It’s best to taste after blending.

Traditional ice creams and blocks are often well over 50 per cent sugar – you’ll be amazed how you can get such a tasty result just using whole fruits and plant foods.

These ice creams will keep for up to two months in the freezer. After that they’re fine from a taste/health perspective, they just start getting a bit icy.

Ever tried a dairy-free cheesecake? This simple strawberry one is a great place to start.

Cashews are a wonderful source of zinc, protein, and healthy MUFA and PUFA (mono- and poly-unsaturated fats) – the ones that support satiety (keep you full), without lining your arteries with unnecessary cholesterol.

For the base, you can swap out half the Brazil nut quantity for the same amount of sunflower seeds (for a more affordable option). If you want to remove the Brazil nuts altogether, almonds, hazelnuts or walnuts work well, too.

The acai powder or beetroot component of the filling is totally optional, but will add a deeper pink colour – as well as extra antioxidants!

Be Good organics berry minty ice creams

Summer Berry Ice Cream

Ingredients

  • 400ml coconut cream
  • 2½ cups berries frozen
  • ¼ cup mint leaves
  • 1½ Tbsp cornflour (or arrowroot)
  • 1 Tbsp coconut sugar (or brown rice syrup
  • or coconut nectar)
  • ⅛ tsp sea salt
  • freeze-dried berries, crushed

Method

  1. In a blender, combine all ingredients until smooth and creamy.
  2. Pour into ice block moulds, patting down to remove any air bubbles. Place an ice-cream stick in the centre of each and pop in the freezer overnight.
  3. Run warm water over the ice block moulds to loosen. Remove and top with freeze-dried berries. Enjoy!

Summer Strawberry Cheesecake

Makes one 18–19cm cheesecake with 16 slices.

Ingredients

Base

  • 1¼ cups Brazil nuts
  • ½ cup desiccated coconut
  • ½ cup medjoul dates (or regular dates, soaked)
  • zest of ½ a lemon
  • ½ tsp vanilla powder
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 1 Tbsp virgin coconut oil

Cream filling

  • 2½ cups cashews, soaked (two hours) and drained
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • ½ cup virgin coconut oil, melted
  • ⅓ cup coconut nectar
  • 2 Tbsp cacao butter, melted
  • ½ tsp vanilla powder
  • ¼ tsp sea salt

Strawberry filling

  • 2½ cups fresh strawberries, tops removed
  • 1 tsp acai powder or 1 Tbsp beetroot, grated (optional)
  • 2 tsp psyllium husk
  • extra strawberries to top

Method

  1. Line a cake tin (one with a removable bottom) with a circle of baking paper, cut to fit.
  2. To make the base: add all the base ingredients to your food processor and blend until crumbly and fine. The mixture should hold together – if it is too crumbly, add 1 Tbsp of water/soaked date juice. Press into your cake tin and flatten down completely with a rubber spatula, then place in the freezer.
  3. To make the cream filling: add the cream filling ingredients to your food processor and blend until super creamy and smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl in between. Pour half of this mixture into the tin.
  4. To make the strawberry filling: add the strawberry filling ingredients to your remaining cream filling and blend until creamy and smooth, then pour this mixture into the tin.
  5. Optional swirl: if desired, use a spoon to scoop from the outside of the cheesecake to the centre, lifting up the cream filling and turning the cake tin around so that you complete around eight scoops.
  6. Put the cheesecake in the freezer overnight. In the morning, remove from tin and top with fresh strawberries. Place back in the fridge until ready to serve.

Variations

  • To make it nut-free, replace the Brazil nuts with sunflower seeds and use watermelon seeds instead of cashews in the cream filling.
  • If you don’t have psyllium husk, you can use another ¼ cup of virgin coconut oil to firm the strawberry layer.
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