I'm an East Coast Gal, so the season of Fall is near and dear to my little heart. After living in San Diego for six years now though, I've come to reflect and realize that much of what I love about Fall isn't really the weather and the changing leaves - although that can be beautiful too. For me, it is the apple pies, Fall flavors, pumpkin chai lattes and family memories on farms picking pumpkins or apples.
So to celebrate Fall in sunny San Diego, every year I usually take a trip East to Julian, CA. I love to visit the Julian Apple Pie Company where they produce apple pies, the smell is amazing and the nostalgia of eating warm apple pies returns! I also love to drink the hard apple cider at Julian Cider Company and go on a brisk hike in nature amongst the trees and mountains of Julian.
This yearly trip is my ode to Fall and fosters my love for this season in a different way, I always try to invite friends and spend this day with people we love as well!
As I transition into a healthier human though, and after becoming a certified raw vegan chef, I am on the quest of converting many of my favorite Fall recipes into healthier, raw vegan versions.
This Raw Vegan Caramel Apple Pie recipe can be adapted with flavors that you love, I recently exchanged the apple in this recipe with pumpkin too! You can use the basics and technique of this recipe to create many of the raw vegan pies and flavors that you are after. I love how simple it is; you can use the same blender or food processor and rinse in between keeping your dish load light. You don't have to worry about burning or overcooking your apples and this recipe is just as mouth watering as the best apple pie I've ever had.
What's even greater is this will last 2 weeks- a month in the freezer depending on how you store it! Every time you want a taste of Fall, you simply pop out one pie out of the individual pan or slice a piece from a larger spring-form pan and let it sit for 10 minutes on the counter. When it comes to room temperature it will be a moist cheesecake consistency. My husband can't wait ten minutes though and just eats his right from the freezer. I guess he prefers ice cream pie!
Either way, happy Fall and enjoy this yummy recipe! Also use this caramel recipe whenever a recipe calls for the sugary, fake stuff!
Recipe Separated by Individual Layer
Food Processor OR High-Powered Blender
Spring Form Pan
Fig & Almond Crust
1 Container of Black Mission Figs (Trader Joes) or similar | Feel free to use Dates instead, I used figs since dates were in the caramel, but dates would work great here too!
1.5 Cup Raw Almonds or Cashews or Pecans
2 T Organic & Pure Maple Syrup
1 t Pure Vanilla Extract
1 t Cinnamon Powder
1 t Maca Powder
1 t Nutmeg
Blend all crust ingredients together in high powered blender or food processor until mixed. Mixture will be a thick consistency, add more maple syrup depending on desired texture. Once mixed, take 1-inch balls and press at bottom of spring form pan if using individual portion pan, if using full cake pan, press mixture throughout bottom evenly. Place pan with pressed crust at bottom in freezer before moving onto your next layer, this will set and firm the crust.
Granny Smith Apple Cheezecake
2 Granny Smith Apples
1 Package Raw Cashews or 2.5 Cups, Soaked Overnight (Put cashews in bowl, cover with purified water, leave for 4-6 hours or overnight, rinse with clean water thoroughly, then put soaked cashews in blender).
1-2 Cups Organic Cashew Milk or Non-Dairy Milk Alternative
1 t Maca Powder
1/2 C Coconut Oil
2 Soaked Dates
2 T Organic & Pure Maple Syrup
Sprinkle of Cinnamon
Rinse blender after making crust, add in all cheezecake ingredients, add 1 cup cashew milk to start, blend on high for several minutes, if you notice it appears too dry or grainy, slowly add in more milk until cheesecake like consistency. The key is to blend on high for several minutes until thoroughly blended and to not add too much liquid to your mixture. Once mixed, fill your spring form pan with cheesecake layer. If using individual serving pan, fill to top, if using larger spring form pan, dump all mixture on top and spread across evenly. Place in freezer while preparing your final layer to set.
Raw Gooey Caramel & Apple Topping
1 Package Pitted Dates or 2.5 Cups, soaked (Put dates in bowl, cover with purified water, let soak for 15-20 minutes before blending)
1 T Maple Syrup
2 T -1/2 Cup Organic Cashew Milk
6 Small Granny Smith Apples, Diced in Small Chunks ( I used 2 Large Honeycrisp Apples & 4 Granny Smith just because)
Rinse blender after making cheezecake layer, add all ingredients EXCEPT APPLES to blender, start by adding 2 T of cashew milk and blend on high for 1 minute, you want the consistency to be similar to normal caramel, so keep on blending, if too thick, add more cashew milk in 1 T increments. You do not want your caramel to be too liquid or too thick. Sweeten as desired, if you want it sweeter, add more maple syrup, heck, even add some cinnamon if you’d like!
Once blended, mix caramel with chopped apples and top your cheezecakes. When I made this batch, I put a dollop of caramel on top of each cheesecake first, then added the apple/caramel mixture to the top. When you bite in, you then are greeted with a gooey caramel center.
I topped all cheezecakes with a light sprinkling of cinnamon powder, maca powder, and a small piece of spiraled apple skin.
When I actually make recipes, I hardly measure, so these are guesstimates. In my eyes, being a raw vegan chef means you want to go by texture, taste, and consistency; trust your judgement and feel free to mix in any other ingredients here from superfoods, different nuts, etc!
Enjoy! And let me know how you like it in the comments. Don't forget to tag #samsorganics so I can see your fall favorites!