Raw Nocello Cream Pie with Cinnamon Chocolate Glaze and Candied Maple Walnuts

nocelloRaw desserts are rocking my world!  Wow!  I never knew anything could be so delicious without refined carbs and unhealthy oils.  And so easy to make as well!  I can’t stop making them.  This one came out so delicious I couldn’t wait to share it.  It does have a small amount of alcohol in it that is obviously not cooked out, so please keep that in mind.  Nocello, walnut liquor, is so incredible it may be my very favorite after dinner drink.  It was my inspiration for this dessert and that is why I added the pear, because walnut and pear pair perfectly (see what I did there?), and the candied walnuts for garnish.  I guess I don’t need to tell you that I enjoyed a slice of this yumminess with a glass of warm Nocello.  Perfection.

crust:

  • 1 c walnuts
  • 10 soaked, pitted dates
  • 1/4 c cocoa powder
  • 1/2 c soaked cashews
  • 2 T maple syrup

Process all together in food processor and then press into the bottom of a lightly greased 8” springform pan.

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filling:

  • 1 ripe pear, peeled
  • 1 1/2 c soaked cashews
  • 4 T coconut oil
  • 1/4 c nocello (or kahlua or frangelico)
  • 1/4 c maple syrup
  • 1 t vanilla

Place all filling ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.

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Pour over crust and freeze for 30 minutes.

glaze:

  • 1/2 c cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 c coconut oil, melted
  • 1/8 t salt
  • 1/4 c maple syrup
  • 1/2 t vanilla

Whisk together all glaze ingredients.

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After 30 minutes, pour glaze over hardened filling.

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Freeze 60-90 minutes more.

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candied walnuts:

  • 1 c walnuts
  • 3 T maple syrup
  • pinch salt

Place nuts, syrup and salt in a dry pan and cook over medium high until sticky, about 3-5 minutes.

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Let pie defrost for about 15-20 minutes before slicing and serving.  Store leftovers in freezer.
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Chunky Monkey Mini Muffins

DSC_0455When I used to work in Manhattan, each morning I would get off the train at Grand Central Station and stop at Zaros to get coffee and the most delicious muffin ever before heading up the escalator to the Pan Am building (now the Met Life building).  Every day I would think about which kind of muffin I was going to get as the train was pulling into the station.  I loved blueberry, apple spice, chocolate chip, and banana.  Each one was practically the size of a baseball and I loved eating them so much until I read that there was over 1,000 calories per muffin.  That was over 20 years ago, and I have not had one since,   To this day, however, one of my favorite breakfast foods is a muffin.  I love them for breakfast and as a snack, and they are so delicious they even serve as dessert!  I also love to make them and keep them in the freezer for my kids to pop in the microwave for a fast and nutritious breakfast on those school days when there is no time to make anything else (just about every day).  I wanted to make a muffin that was not only healthy, but also tasted great.  I think I have accomplished that here.  Honestly, even if  the Zaros muffins magically became vegan, I would choose my muffin instead!

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  • 3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 3/4 cup spelt flour
  • 1 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 2 T ground flax mixed with 5 T water.  Combine and let sit 5 minutes.
  • 1/2 cup agave nectar
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 2 t vanilla
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips plus optional 1/4 cup extra
  • 2 bananas, mashed

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Preheat oven to 350.

In a small bowl, combine first five ingredients.

In a large bowl, combine the flaxseed and water mix, agave, oil and vanilla.  Add walnuts, banana and chocolate chips.

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Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just incorporated.

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Lightly grease muffin tins.  Recipe makes 42 mini muffins or 12 muffins.

Spoon batter to fill tins 2/3.   If you really love chocolate, you can sprinkle a couple of extra chips on top of each muffin.

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DSC_0417Bake 10 minutes for minis and 18 minutes for regular sized muffins.

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Raw Pineapple Mint Pie

pineI am just loving raw desserts!  They are so incredibly easy to make and so much more enjoyable to eat, knowing not only that they are cruelty-free but also that there is nothing unhealthy in them.  They are literally guilt-free in more ways than one!!  This pie came out so refreshing and the chocolate crust is the perfect complement to the tang of the pineapple and the mint.  The whole thing took less than ten minutes to make, and then just an hour or so in the freezer.   I do still love to bake, especially in the wintertime, but for now, it is raw all the way!!

For the crust:

  • 1 cup pecans
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 8 medjool dates, pitted and soaked in water for 20 minutes, unless soft already
  • 1/8 t salt
  • 2 T cocoa powder

For the filling:

  • 3 cups raw cashews, soaked overnight (unless you have a high speed blender)
  • 1 1/4 cup chopped pineapple
  • 2 T coconut oil
  • juice of 1/2 a lime
  • 1 T agave nectar
  • 1-2 T fresh mint (taste and see how much you like)
  • 1-2 T water to get it to a consistency where it can be poured.

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Process crust ingredients in a food processor until they come together in a big clump.

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Press into the bottom and up the sides of a lightly greased pie pan.

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Place all filling ingredients in a blender or processor

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and blend/process until smooth.

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Pour into pan and smooth top.

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Freeze for at least an hour.

Store in fridge.

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