Vanilla Baked Cheesecake

After too many crazy busy months looks like it's time to give you some fresh new content, don't you think? I baked this cheezecake back in April and now I think that maybe it should've been more appropriate to publish a no-bake or raw recipe since it's getting really hot and summer it's just around the corner...but this recipe it's worth turning on the oven no matter how hot outside it is ;-p
I still have quite a lot of recipes to share here on the blog and a couple "quick & easy" ones on my Instagram I hope there are still a few of you following my blog posts. The 'gram is awesome but, call me old-fashioned, can't beat a nice blog post with bigger pictures that make you drool...and you can also save to your Pinterest boards.
This vegan cheesecake was a success at home, it has a lovely vanilla flavor with a velvety and smooth rich texture; tastes delicious on its own but of course you can spread a fine layer of raspberry jam (or any wild berry jam) on top, and you'll take this dessert to the next level!
I'm gonna keep it short and sweet cause lately I don't feel like there's nothing interesting to talk about myself, well...after all with this whole pandemic situation I've been a homebody more than ever! Basically I've been cooking and shooting new recipes, taking care of my foster kittens and their mama (they were all adopted, yay!) and redecorating my tiny home office.

Hope everyone is doing good! xo

Vanilla Baked Cheesecake
(yield: 6 to 8 servings approximately)

- Crust:
250 g vegan digestive biscuits.
2 tablespoons unrefined (golden light) brown cane sugar.
5 tablespoons extra virgin coconut oil, melted.
1 tablespoon almond milk.

- Cheesecake:
350 g silken tofu.
1/2 cup raw cashews.
2/3 cup unrefined (golden light) brown cane sugar.
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut yogurt.
2 tablespoons extra virgin coconut oil, semi-solid.
2 tablespoons lemon juice.
1 tablespoon cornstarch.*
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla bean powder.
1/4 teaspoon pink Himalayan salt.

- Toppings:
Fresh red berries such as strawberries, raspberries and red currants.

* Notes:
I always recommend using organic cornstarch since corn is one of the most common GMO foods. You can sub cornstarch for arrowroot powder or tapioca starch.

- For the crust:
Preheat oven to 180 ºC and lightly grease the base of a 23-cm springform pan, line the base with parchment paper.
To make the biscuit crumbs simply ground them using a food processor and transfer to a mixing bowl. Mix in with the sugar, coconut oil and one tablespoon of almond milk, until it resembles wet sand. Press down the crumb mixture as firmly as you can on the base of the prepared pan to create a compact even layer.
Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until firm and lightly brown. Let the crust cool on a wire rack while we prepare the filling.

- For the cheesecake:
Soak the cashews overnight with a pinch of salt, and drain well before using. Place them inside the bowl of your food processor (or a high-speed blender), add in the silken tofu (drained and cut into pieces), and the coconut yogurt. Pulse a few times until the tofu looks crumbled. Add in the rest of the ingredients: sugar, coconut oil, lemon juice, cornstarch, vanilla and salt. Process until a soft creamy mixture forms and make sure no lumps are visible, it must have a velvety soft texture.
Pour the mixture into the prepared crust and smooth the top with a spatula.
Bake for 50 minutes, until the top of the cheesecake looks set and not runny and borders are done/golden brown.
Let the cake cool completely on a wire rack before unmolding.
Decorate with a mix of red berries and let it set in the fridge before slicing and serving.