Life is short; eat dessert first. You’ll want to with this fresh berry cashew crème vegan tiramisu with orange and cacao.
Since discovering the deliciousness of nut and coconut crème creations, dairy has long since departed from my dietary preferences. Instead, I opt for creations such as this playful, fruity take on the infamous tiramisu. Tiramisu is great in its vegan version, perhaps with a little mascarpone. This combo of berries, crème, orange and chocolate is a sure-fire winner and yes you can put this under the umbrella of Teri’s good-for-you indulgences.
It’s really easy to make, can be done ahead of time and keeps ‘unconstructed’ for a day or so. You can even serve it in a mason jar for a fabulous mid-day, on-the-go treat.
Fresh Berry Cashew Crème Vegan Tiramisu
Prep time: 20 minutes plus soaking and chilling time
Yield: Makes 4–6 servings
- 1 cup raw whole cashews, soaked 6–12 hours, drained, and rinsed
- ½ cup coconut water (approximately) or non-dairy milk such as cashew, Brazil, or almond
- 3–4 tablespoons maple syrup, raw honey or coconut nectar, to taste
- 1 tablespoon brandy or real vanilla extract
- 1–2 drops essential orange oil, optional (be sure to use an edible brand)
- Tiny pinch sea salt, optional
- ½ cup unrefined coconut oil, gently warmed in a hot water bath to melt
- 3/4 cup fresh mixed berries per person, washed just before using
- ½–¾ cup roughly crushed cashews, lightly toasted
- 2–3 tablespoons raw cacao nibs, lightly crushed if the nibs are large
- Orange liqueur or orange juice and orange zest
1. Place cashews, liquid, 3 tablespoons syrup, honey or nectar, brandy or vanilla, essential oil and sea salt in a high speed power blender. Blast on high speed, scraping down sides of blender occasionally until the mixture is creamy and very smooth.
2. Reduce blender to low speed, slowly pour a steady stream of the coconut oil through opening in the blender lid. Continue to blend until emulsified, taste and adjust sweetener if needed.
3. Transfer to a glass bowl, cover and chill in the refrigerator 2 hours. Stir before using.
4. In 4–6 large martini glasses, using one half of the berries, arrange a layer in each glass. Top each with a generous spoonful of cashew crème, repeat with berries and crème then sprinkle with toasted cashews, a drizzle of orange liqueur or juice, orange zest and raw cacao nibs. Can be assembled and chilled for a few hours if needed.
Why you can consider this dessert good for you:
Cashews are rich in copper, magnesium, tryptophan, and selenium. While often avoided for fear of their high fat content, they actually have a lower fat content than most other nuts and approximately 75% of their fat is unsaturated fatty acids. To add to the benefits, approximately 75% of this unsaturated fatty acid content is oleic acid and promotes good cardiovascular health. Studies of diabetic patients show that monounsaturated fat, when added to a low-fat diet, can help to reduce high triglyceride levels.
The coconut oil used contains two main fatty acids: lauric and capric acid. The medium chain triglycerides exhibit antimicrobial activity and help combat pathogenic or disease-causing viruses, bacteria, and other microorganisms. In addition, coconut oil actually aids the body in fat metabolism and is effective in weight management.
The raw cacao nibs, considered a super food are also mineral rich and considered one of the best sources of antioxidants. High quality cacao can help with cardiovascular health, lower blood pressure, and aid with digestion. Perhaps surprisingly, it’s a good source of protein and fiber, so, yes, go ahead and enjoy some quality chocolate.
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