Chocolate and Peanut Butter Cheesecake
I sometimes feel that when I’m hunting around for recipes, although more often than not I can find vegetarian ingredients which can replace meat, I’m rarely able to find vegan recipes so I was so chuffed to find this one which I hope anyone, whether they be vegan, vegetarian or carnivorous might enjoy.
Cocoa Plant (Kew Gardens, London)
The recipe is enough for four people. The cacao nibs are basically the most expensive ingredient. They’re readily available in health stores but, if you can’t find them, you can get them online both here in the UK and the USA. Apart from that, the other ingredients are pretty standard … vegans can of course go for vegan peanut butter, soy milk and tofu cream cheese. However, whether you choose the vegetarian or vegan route, this dessert is relatively easy to prepare and doesn’t require any cooking.
For the Base
200g (around 8 oz) cacao nibs
50g (2 oz) cocoa powder
25g (1 oz) icing sugar
40g ( 1.5 fluid oz) olive oil
For the Topping
270g (10 oz) crunchy peanut butter
225g (9 oz) cream cheese
75g (3 fl oz) milk
25g (1 oz) icing sugar
Prepare the base by giving the cacao nibs a very swift churn around in a blender. Remember that these take the place of a biscuit base so they only need VERY minimal blending.
Take the nibs from the blender and mix the other dry ingredients (not the olive oil) by hand and then stir in the olive oil until the ingredients are well mixed.
Line the bottom of a 25cm x 20cm (10″ x 8″) square baking tin with greaseproof paper and spread the base mix evenly over the bottom and up the sides.
Now for the topping Mix the cream cheese, milk and icing sugar together, fold in the peanut butter and mix lightly until it takes on a marble effect.
Spread this across the top of the cocoa base, smooth over and chill it overnight (or about 6-8 hours) to allow it to set properly.
If you want to buy your cacao nibs online I’ve googled and found a multitude of health stores which sell them. From a quick check, I’ve discovered that here in the UK http://www.healthysupplies.co.uk/cacao-nibs-raw-infinity.html seem to be reasonably priced and I instantly found a Canadian company who would supply the US http://www.foreverhealthy.net/html/products/displayProduct.asp?ProductID=379.
Of course, if you’re not a vegan you can always substitute the more expensive cacao nibs with a basic biscuit base from a normal cheesecake recipe but ensure that there are plenty of chocolate chips in it but once in a while it’s good to to push the boat out and enjoy a little bit of luxury!