Holiday dessert that will impress

A couple of weeks ago, we had our occasional vegan gourmet club I lovingly call Veggie Fest.  You should try this.  Gourmet clubs have a reputation for being food orgies that usually involve a lot of decadent, unusual food with a theme, alcohol, and indigestion, so a VEGAN gourmet club might seem like an oxymoron.

Its actually one of the most fabulous and looked-forward-to event events at my house.  My HUSBAND even asks, “when’s the next veggiefest??” with anticipation!

None of us are actually vegan.  It all started when I flirted with veganism, or what I like to refer to as plant-based eating, after watching a few too many food documentaries.  I decided to try it for  as long as I could.  I made it 6 months.  Not too shabby.

We always impress ourselves about how good we have gotten at finding amazingly delicious recipes that use only plants, and we joke and laugh about how the first few dinners caused some “intestinal discomfort.”  Despite that, we hung in there and now share great recipes that we mostly get from other awesome vegan bloggers.

This past dinner I made a delicious Raw Orange and Blueberry Cheesecake (yes, vegan), from OneGreenPlanet .  YUM!  It’s not only impressive looking, but it really is delicious.  AND, you can make it for Passover or Easter (or for a summer birthday cake, or a baby shower, etc).  I made a few modifications, but otherwise I used the recipe on the OneGreenPlanet.

For the crust, I used 2 cups of hazelnuts and 1 heaping tbsp of raw cacao powder, about 10 dates and a pinch of salt.  This was combined in a  food processor until very fine and sticky.  I put it in a lined (with plastic wrap) springform pan.

For the main “cheesecake” layer, I followed the recipe here and added 5 drops of doTerra Wild Orange essential oil to give it a little more orange flavor (it needed it even with using the juice of 3 oranges and their zest). Only use doTerra brand.  Other brands are not edible.  Wild Orange also has awesome antioxidant properties (double bonus!). If you would like to order a bottle, just contact me.  (read  about essential oils here).

There were a lot of OOOH’s and AAAH’s.  The nutella-like crust was an amazing little extra.  There was none left over.  And all the ingredients are kosher for passover! YAY for healthy delicious Passover treats!!

Please let me know how YOURS turns out and if you made any modifications by leaving a comment below!  Happy Spring Holidays!!  Elyse




Kosher for Passover treat that is healthy too! BUCKEYES!!

Every 3-4 months we invite some friends over for a gourmet club.  This is no ordinary gourmet club, though.  When you think of gourmet club, usually very decadent dishes come to mind, but this dinner club is focused on healthy food.  So, most people would think aaah, no thanks!  But, the food is DELICIOUS!  And, that is really the whole point: to show (especially the hubbies) how eating healthy can be scrumptious. 

Oh, I forgot to mention that its a VEGAN gourmet club, even though no one in the group is actually a practicing vegan.  I will tell you about the conception of our group another time (and hopefully it will inspire you to start your own!!), because I really want to share this surprisingly delicious recipe for Buckeyes.  Not only are the vegan (gotta use vegan dark chocolate to be official–but that is readily available these days), they are A LOT healthier than the traditional version which uses about a pound of confectioners sugar. 



The sweetness in this recipe comes from medjool dates, which are high in fiber and lots of vitamins and minerals.  They are so easy and take so little time, I’m just gonna share so you can get to it! 

Oh, and I forgot, it being the weekend before Passover, this is a great dessert!!!  As long as you eat peanut butter or you can also use almond butter. 

This is not my recipe.  Someone in the group made them (Diana Klein)–Thank you Diana!

Rolos/Buckeyes (I think I’ll call them Buckos :-))

7 oz or 1 cup of pitted soft Medjool dates. If they are not really soft, soak them in water for 30 minutes then drain
2 TBL peanut butter
pinch of sea salt

mix the above in a food processor and pulse until a sticky paste forms.
scoop into a bowl and freeze uncovered for 10 minutes
line a plate with parchment paper and roll into balls and place on the parchment paper. it helps if your hands are wet.
freeze for 10 minutes to firm up.

Chocolate Coating
1/2 to 1 cup of dark chocolate chips.
1/2 tsp coconut oil
melt chocolate in either the microwave or in a saucepan.

stick a toothpick in the date mixture and dip each ball in the chocolate to coat.
place back on the parchment paper.
freeze when done. Keep frozen until you are ready to eat.. Enjoy


YUMMNESS!!!! Happy Holiday!!