Hey there, vegan friends! I work behind the scenes here at New Vegan Heart, so…it's nice to meet you all! I recently commandeered this ship for a bit to surprise our fearless leader with a birthday treat and I wanted to briefly share the experience here. That's right– Miss New Vegan Heart herself had a birthday last month, so I took it upon myself to bake her a fully vegan indulgence, and let me tell you, it was quite the undertaking!
Now, I consider myself to be fairly competent in the kitchen, but when it comes to crafting vegan recipes from scratch, I'm definitely a novice. But, to treat our special lady, I wanted to surprise her with a vegan version of one of her favorite desserts…cheesecake! So, I started to research some options and stumbled upon this gem from our friends at Minimalist Baker. I made sure all the ingredients were on hand in our kitchen, waited until she went to sleep, and then got to work!
Have you ever tried to use a blender in the middle of the night without waking everyone in the house? Well, I have…and it's tricky, but it can be done! (She asked me the next morning what I had been up to, but thankfully, I convinced her she just had a dream about smoothies. Whew!) Anyway, I started by blending the crust ingredients and then patted that doughy mixture into the loaf pan. While that was baking in the oven, I mixed the filling. I tasted it to make sure the flavor was on point, and I don't want to brag, but I think I nailed it! Once the crust was pre-baked, I poured the filling over it in the pan, smoothed it out evenly, and popped it back into the oven for the full bake.
Next, I'll admit, I made myself a cocktail while I let the oven work its magic. I was past the point of no return, so I figured I might as well kick my feet up for the next hour. But, before I knew it, that hour flew by! The timer rang, I pulled the cake out of the oven, and let it rest and cool at room temperature. Once it was completely cooled, I covered the entire pan with some foil, flush to the top surface of the cake, and popped the whole thing back into the fridge where it would stay overnight. I then finished my nightcap and snuck off to bed, a bit proud of my accomplishment. Don't get me wrong– I was nervous about trying my hand at this recipe, but I was also excited to make her something I knew she would enjoy!
The next day, while she was out, I carefully removed the cheesecake from the pan and began to slice it into triangles. (I tried a few bites while I was carving the cake, and truly, it did taste like "the real thing!") I arranged the pieces on a platter, gently covered the dish, and placed it back into the fridge, anxiously waiting for her to walk into the house at any second! Then, finally…the big reveal! I had a few other birthday surprises ready for her return, and while she was all smiles, I presented this delicious dessert! She was so excited and could not believe that I was able to craft a fully vegan treat for her all by myself, and honestly, I was a little amazed myself! We had a slice right then and there, and maybe another slice for brunch the following morning…ok, fine…for breakfast! It was a celebration!
I highly recommend everyone giving this dessert a whirl, and again, I'd like to thank Minimalist Baker for the recipe and I would encourage all of you vegans out there to check out their work as well. Now, I'm handing the keys back over to our girl, and I'll see you all later on!