Patty’s Chocolate Mango Cheesecake

 

Patty’s Chocolate Mango Cheesecake

(It’s raw and living)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup  raw cacao powder
  • 3 cups raw cashews (soaked for about 45 minutes)
  • 2 cups rejuvelac or water
  • 1 cup sprouted sunflower seeds
  • 3 1/2 cups of date sauce (see recipe below)
  • 3 peeled and chopped sweet ripe mangos
  • 2 cups of fresh coconut meat
  • About 1 teaspoon of sea salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Cinnamon
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 2 cups of walnuts
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil melted
  • 1/2 cup date sugar
  • 1 cup lecithin

Date Sauce: I use date sauce as the basis of many recipes because I prefer dates as a sweetener. Date Sauce is thinner than date paste and thicker than syrup. It is the consistency of apple sauce and easy to make.  Just add pitted dates to your high-speed blender and blend them up with water. Add the water slowly to get it to the correct consistency. I keep date sauce in a jar in my refrigerator to use for many different recipes.

1. Make the crust first: Simply grind the walnuts and date sugar in a high speed blender. Pour mixture into a bowl. Add coconut oil. Pat  mixture into bottom of a 9-inch spring form pan.

2. Make the caramel filling for the center of your cheesecake:  Simply blend  one cup of date sauce with one cup of sprouted sunflower seeds and 1 Tbsp. cinnamon.  (Hint: Make twice as much as you need and keep half on hand in your fridge for dipping apple slices. Kids of all ages enjoy these raw living caramel apples!) Set this caramel mixture aside for a few minutes.

3. Make the chocolate and mango cheesecake fillings:  In a high-speed blender combine until very smooth: 3 cups soaked cashews; 2 cups coconut meat; 2 cups rejuvelac or water; 2 cups date sauce; 1/2 cup lecithin; and a pinch of sea salt. If you do not have a Blendtec or Vitamix, use a good food processor. Go slowly. Turn your blender off every two minutes to give it a rest and stir the mixture, scrape the sides of the blender.  (Or use the Twister jar on the BlendTec, very easy, and do it in batches!) When it all is very smooth and creamy, remove 1/3 of the mixture  from the blender and place it in a bowl . Add  one cup of cacao powder, 1/2 cup date sauce, to the remaining two thirds in the blender or food processor.  Blend until chocolate mixture is very creamy. With a firm spatula pour the chocolate cheesecake filling mixture into the spring-form pan on top of the crust.

Next spread a thin layer of caramel filling on top of the chocolate cheesecake layer.

Clean your blender container and put the creamy mixture you had set aside back into the blender. Add 2/3 of the mangos, 1/2 cup of lecithin, and one banana. Blend until smooth. Add remaining mangos and pulse to combine them (don’t pulse too much, keep it chunky).

Spread your mango filling layer on top of the caramel layer.

Cover cheesecake with plastic wrap and set in the freezer for two or three hours. Remove cheesecake from freezer and refrigerate for one to two hours before serving. Garnish with cacao powder and mangos and serve cold.

Enjoy!

 

HEALTHY CHOCOLATE MOUSSE

 

Here’s a recipe for CHOCOLATE MOUSSE, one version of a favorite and very common recipe among raw foodies. It’s so easy, and it might get you through a party where everyone else is eating shiz!

(Shiz is my kids’ latest word for ‘all things bad.’ I think they’re approximating a swear word in a way they get away with it?)

HEALTHY CHOCOLATE MOUSSE

1 ripe avocado

1 ripe banana

2 soft dates

3 Tbsp cacao powder

Splash of vanilla, pinch of sea salt

Blend till creamy, optionally chill for 1-2 hours, and enjoy!

Recipes from CHI! Part 1 of 2

“Going off sugar” has always been hard for me, because the way I eat really healthy even in the face of temptation, is to tell myself, “I could have that if I wanted to. I choose not to.” (I list reasons in my head, if I’m tempted.) Or, occasionally, I say yes rather than no, and I eat chocolate! I “went off” junk food years ago, but I have never stayed completely away from sugar for more than a few months at a time.

So to tell myself, “You can’t have that” does a weird number on me psychologically, brings out my demonic inner rebel. However, I’m up for the challenge. And having things to eat, that you love, that contain no sugar or chemical sweeteners, is key! Here are some ideas I came back from CHI with.

Joyce Oliveto’s Favorite Dessert

Joyce puts a 1 quart fresh blueberries in the blender, with 3 Tbsp. date paste (you can make this with dates and a little water), and a pinch of cinnamon and vanilla powder. Layer it with soaked, chopped raw almonds. (I made this for Matthew, on my YouTube video posted yesterday!)

Chef Madeline

As I told you, Madeline is 67. Here she is in a photo with director Bobby Morgan and raw-food book author Hiawatha Cromer. When I found out how old Madeline was, I shrieked, “SHUT! UP!” (It’s a really dumb thing to say, but I live with three teenagers and stuff like that comes out of my mouth.) I finally have the picture of what I want to be when I am a full generation ahead of where I am now! She golfs competitively. She’s organized and ego-free and constantly learning and an articulate teacher. She’s just a positive-energy dynamo, and she’s sexy as heck, too. Her husband is almost 80 and is the same way!

For her recipes, there are some superfoods you might not recognize. Research them if you want—but they’re cool foods with a David Wolfe-like twist: that in the modern age, the privileged and the educated can leverage all the powerful nutrition secrets from all over the globe. (I stick to the basics because I consider my audience the Average “Jo” who needs to get more simple and cheap spinach, apples, and flax in the diet FIRST.

But maca is the best libido-enhancer I know, lucuma is a low-glycemic sweetener from a Peruvian fruit that makes caramelly-tasting raw desserts, and mesquite is from a pod in North American trees, high in protein and minerals, that regulates blood sugar and sweetens with a molasses-like caramel note.)

Madeline loves to buy stuff on Vitacost.com—so much so that she had a laminated page she’d hold up at CHI every time there was an ingredient…in response to the question “Where do I buy that?” I just ordered some lucuma and toffee-flavored stevia there, myself, and am making this shake today. I’ve added my own twist of freezing some of it so it’s a frozen shake rather than a thinner drink like Madeline makes it.

Choca-Laca-Maca Shake

2 cups sweetened almond milk (see tomorrow’s blog)

1 frozen banana

1 Tbsp lacuma

1 Tbsp raw cacao nibs (optional)

8-10 drops toffee-flavored stevia (vitacost.com)

2 tsp maca

1 Tbsp. mesquite

½ tsp vanilla

Freeze half the almond milk in ice cube trays. Blend frozen cubes with all remaining ingredients till smooth in BlendTec and drink immediately!

This is a delicious way to use your RAW almonds from our annual group buy, which we will kick off on approx. Oct. 1. (Almonds you buy in the store have been pasteurized, killing enzymes and making soaking them overnight mostly pointless because life, or germination, cannot occur.)

a recipe from Dr. Michelle Jorgenson

I love working with Michelle Jorgenson and her enthusiastic employees as they shift to whole-foods habits on GreenSmoothieGirl Makeover. She makes foods for the whole office to improve their health, as well as her own husband and four children. This week I was filming at her house, and I have to say, I have a great garden, but her garden kicks my garden’s trash!

We swapped tastes of our uber-healthy treats (mine was Almond Joy Fudge in Ch. 4 of 12 Steps). This was her creation that I love!

Dr. Jorgenson’s Power-Through-The-Day Bars

2 C unsweetened shredded coconut

2 C chopped nuts (almonds, pecans, etc, or a combination)

2 C chopped dates (you can buy chopped dates rolled in oat flour inexpensively in bulk at many health food stores in bulk foods)

1/2 C flax seed

1/2 C chia seed

1/2 C raw cocoa, carob or cacao powder

1/4 t Original Himalayan Crystal Salt, or sea salt

1 t vanilla

1 1/2 C mini chocolate chips, naturally sweetened

1 pkg. plain vegan gelatin

1/2 C  hot water

1/2 C raw honey

1/4 t Original Himalayan Crystal Salt, or sea salt

1 t vanilla

Blend the coconut, nuts, dates and flax seeds each separately in a high powered blender until medium fine.  Mix the blended ingredients with the chia seeds, cocoa powder, 1/4 t salt, 1 t vanilla and chocolate chips in a large bowl and set aside.

Dissolve the gelatin in the hot water let stand for five minutes.   Add the honey, salt and vanilla and beat until fluffy (or mix in blender until frothy.)

Add the honey mixture to the mixture in the bowl and stir until everything is moistened.   Press into a 9 x 13 pan with moistened hands.   Refrigerate for 1-2 hours until set.   Cut into bars and keep in a container in the fridge or freezer.

chocolate: friend or foe?

Dear GreenSmoothieGirl: Is chocolate actually good for me? Will you do a good/better/best on all the carob and chocolate options? I’m craving chocolate after having a baby and want to know what’s best.

Answer: It’s a confusing subject because so many products have been made from cacao, the seed of the fruit, the whole food, that is the source for “chocolate.” (Most processed chocolate products manufactured by candy companies have precious little cacao in them, if any–they are often chocolate-FLAVORED products.)

Chocolate has been given a lot of attention lately because of some of its nutritional properties. It’s tempting to WANT to see it as a cure-all. Why?

Because it has compounds in it that make us (myself included) crave it. In fact, just writing this, I had to take a break to find chocolate, because I was daydreaming about it. There’s a built-in desire to call chocolate a health food.

No, I’m not about to tell you to avoid chocolate. (Whew!) Unprocessed dark chocolate is a very complex food with hundreds of chemical compounds, many of which are very beneficial nutritionally.

Those who market it tout its ORAC score (a cumulative antioxidant score) of over 13,000, higher than virtually any other food, even green tea and acai berries. Dark chocolate contains heart-healthy, cancer-preventing nutrients linked to helpful blood thinning, protection against diabetes, mental alertness, even weight loss. It’s high in minerals as well.

(A caveat, however: those same nutrients can be found in other, lower calorie and lower fat, raw plant foods that cost less than $1/lb. And along with the healthy dark chocolate usually comes lots of fat and sugar, and usually quite a bit of processing that loses some of the health benefits.)

If you do eat chocolate, find cacao content at 60% or above. If you’re accustomed to processed “chocolate,” you may barely recognize the dark, bitter, earthy taste of the whole food.

Cacao is the seed of the fruit, the whole food, that chocolate comes from (before it is typically and often processed to a nearly unrecognizable form). Cacao is also called cocoa beans or nuts or seeds. Dried cocoa beans are called cocoa nibs.

A very aggressive network marketing company sells little daily bites of chocolate–not organic, not raw, but high in cacao and sweetened fairly naturally–that calculate to be about $60/lb.

That is correct, $60/lb. And they’re selling it by the UPS truckload–even though superior products cost 1/6th that amount in retail outlets. The only good thing I have to say about that is that they’re feeding you about the right amount, daily: a small nugget of dark chocolate. These products are still very high in fat and some type of concentrated sweetener, so more is not better.

And if you’re eating lots of expensive dark chocolate and can’t afford a whole-foods pantry, please re-evaluate your spending decisions.

If you’re going to eat chocolate, preferably eat organic, fair traded, high cacao-content (60% or higher), naturally sweetened (agave, maple syrup, stevia, etc. rather than cane sugar). I do not really believe any labeling of chocolate products as “raw.”

First, there has to be some processing; and second, since virtually all chocolate is coming out of third-world countries, policing that is difficult at best and impossible at worst. (Same issue we’ve been discussing with agave.)

Carob is a chocolate “wannabe” that does not stimulate the dopamine receptors in the brain like chocolate does. It doesn’t contain natural stimulants theobromine and caffeine like chocolate does, which may cause people to feel unwell. If you like the flavor of carob, that’s possibly your “best” option in the good/better/best analysis below.

But most people seek chocolate for a reason: it has the feel-good amino acid tryptophan which makes the brain transmitter serotonin that depressed people lack. In short, chocolate makes us happy.

So here it is:

Good: dark chocolate, naturally sweetened (no HFCS or other refined sugars)

Better: Dark chocolate (60% cacao or better, 80% if that’s not too dark for you). Free traded, organic, naturally sweetened bars are about $10-15/lb. at health food stores. Or make your own recipes using non-alkalized, unsweetened cocoa powder.

Best: make your own recipes (Ch. 11 of 12 Steps to Whole Foods, or other raw-food recipes) with raw cacao nibs.

Use sweeteners like stevia, maple syrup, raw agave. Use virgin coconut oil or avocadoes for the fat. Or skip chocolate altogether and use CAROB if you like the taste of it better.

In terms of the products you can purchase, the ORAC scores tell us this:

Good: non-alkalized (non-Dutched) unsweetened cocoa powder

Better: Dark chocolate, roasted cacao powder

Best: Raw cacao powder or raw cacao nibs

swine flu prevention: should you worry?

I hope you aren’t worried about the swine flu.   Like you, I’ve been reading all about it.   I am simply not worried.   Not because I don’t understand the risk, but because by following a few simple practices, you minimize your risk, and the rest is in God’s hands anyway, where we would do well to leave the remainder.   “Do your best and forget the rest,” as Tony says in P90X, the extreme workout regimen I started this week.   Or, as an embroidery sampler said that my mother did, hanging on her wall as I was growing up, “God grant me the wisdom to change the things I can and accept the things I cannot.”

All that written, I got the devastating news last night that my beautiful 36-year old cousin I grew up with, who had no known health problems and was a normal weight, has passed away on the way to the hospital of cardiac arrest after contracting the flu.   (Swine flu is not suspected.)   My extended family is reeling and we are praying for her young family that includes three little boys.

I don’t think the answers lie in extreme precautions, running out and buying gas masks and paraphernalia.   Experts I have read say that the little germ masks won’t do us a bit of good against the swine flu.   Washing your hands well, not touching doorknobs and other things in public, and staying out of crowds is common sense wisdom.

Adding to your food storage some power foods and natural remedies against illness is wise.   Vitamin C, colloidal silver, oregano, garlic, sproutable seeds/nuts/grains, spirulina, cacao, goji berries, cayenne, aloe vera, and ginger.

Drink lots of water (half your weight in ounces), jump on a rebounder, get enough sleep, and get out in the sun at least 15 minutes daily for your Vitamin D–these four things are paramount to keep your immune system supported and lymph fluids moving and draining.   Minimize stress and maximize love in your life.   Don’t exhaust your adrenal glands with eating sugar, and nourish all the organs of your body with whole plant foods, mostly raw.

Thinking that because we’re healthy and have nourished our immune system should give us lots more confidence, but of course it was the healthy/young in the population who died en masse in the flu epidemic of 1918.   (Usually those with strong immune systems do well, and I see no evidence to the contrary so far with the swine flu.)   So observing the simple precautionary behaviors mentioned above would be wise as well.

Indulging in fear and panic is not wise, and it’s paralytic and unhelpful anyway.  My prediction is that this is not going to be a massive pandemic; it will go away soon, though we may have a Round 2 in the fall.   Most who get the swine flu will find that it’s no worse than the usual influenzas that some people contract in the winter.

If I’m right, that will give you some time to focus on preparedness, including a three-month supply of food so you could stay home if you needed to.