If you've ever been curious about adding a little flower power to your cake to give it that extra-special factor, I've got just the cake for you to experiment with. The beautiful flavor of lavender, the delicate and subdued lilac hue, and the creamy highlights of chocolate and pistachio make this an extra special treat.
Of course you could make this cake for a celebration, or for that someone in your life who loves lavender (you know someone right?!), or just for when you're feeling like getting adventurous with flavors :)
Lavender is something I use quite often when I bake goodies for myself. I also love drying and storing my own lavender from the beautiful bushes that grow near home. Something about harvesting it from scratch made me fall in love with all things lavender.
But hey, it's not a flavor for everyone, and can sometimes come across as strange or intense for someone unfamiliar with lavender in baked goods. I wanted to make this raw cake for someone who has never tried lavender in a dessert before, so I went easy on the lavender, but if you're a big lavender lover, then feel free to increase the amount to taste. Just note that the flavor will intensify a touch as the cake sets.
While the lavender taste here is light, it's still quite noticeable. Usually lavender is paired with lemon or blueberries, etc. in baked goods. I also love it with earl grey. But I didn't add a lot of other flavors to the recipe, not even lemon juice, to make it stand out more for its own unique and beautiful flavor.
The slight bit of maqui powder inhere is mostly to supply the pretty purple tint to the cake. You can read more about maqui and why I love using it, as well as check out another favorite cake of mine with it here.
In a pinch though, you can add a nice purple by using some blueberries instead, which will add a different shade of purple. As a bonus, blueberries pair well with lavender, so it's a winning combo either way. But maqui is always my personal favorite way to purple.
As usual lately, this recipe is for a small 4″ cake. Triple (thinner) or quadruple (taller) for a 6″ if you prefer. Note, if you have a low-profile blender, you might have to increase the cake size. I make these small cakes using my Vitamix, but I know for those that upgraded to the newer low-profile models blending small batches for raw cakes can be a challenge. I explain a bit more about it on my baking resources page.
P.S. For tips on making raw cakes like a pro, check out my book Unconventional Treats.Print
Maqui Lavender Raw Cheesecake
This raw cheesecake combines the brilliant flavor of lavender with the beautiful purple hues of maqui berry. This recipe is raw, vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, and refined sugar-free.
- Prep Time: 25 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 hours
- Total Time: 5 hours 25 minutes
- Yield: 4" cake
- Category: Cake
- Method: Raw
- Cuisine: Dessert
- ½ cup raw cashews
- 1 soft medjool date, pitted
- ½ tbsp coconut oil
- ½ tbsp maple syrup
- ½ tsp maqui berry powder
- ½ cup raw cashews, pre-soaked and strained*
- 2 tbsp maple syrup (or agave)
- 2 tbsp coconut oil, liquefied
- 2 tbsp almond milk
- 1-2 teaspoon maqui berry powder**
- 1 tsp culinary dried lavender
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp raw ground vanilla bean (optional)
- ¼ tsp salt
- Cacao nibs, chocolate bits, chopped pistachio nuts, culinary dried lavender buds
- Process all crust ingredients, except maple syrup, in a food processor until a sticky crumble is formed. Add maple syrup and process again to combine. Transfer the mixture into a 4" springform pan and press to form a crust along the base and a bit up the edges all around. Place the pan in the freezer while working on the next step.
- Blend all filling ingredients in a power blender until completely smooth. Pour this mixture into the pan over the crust. Smooth out the top. Decorate with toppings.
- Freeze for 5 hours or overnight. Thaw out a touch and enjoy! Keep leftovers frozen.
*To pre-soak nuts: place in a glass bowl, cover with water, and leave to soak for 4 hours (or overnight in the fridge). Then strain and discard the water. For a quick pre-soak, cover with boiled water and soak for 15 mins, then strain and discard water. (Note: this technique doesn't preserve the nutrition of the recipe as well as the traditional soaking technique above). Additional Note: the purpose of soaking the nuts is to re-hydrate them and plump them up for blending into a smooth, cheesecake-like consistency. Proper soaking techniques also maximize nutrition and digestibility. If you're interested in learning more about nut soaking and other dessert prep tips and tricks, I delve into these subjects in detail in my book Unconventional Treats.
**In the cake pictured I used only 1 teaspoon maqui for a lighter color, but feel free to increase the amount to 2, and even 3 teaspoon if you like a darker colored-cake and a more pronounced maqui flavor.