I've been meaning to publish this post for days now but computer issues prevent such from transpiring. I'm hoping the problem is fully resolved as I've been cooking up a storm, but only time will tell.
Anywho, a few posts back, I shared my the great news of having been accepted into the Secret Recipe Club. Well, the day of the reveal, I sat perched at my computer and anxiously waited to see who was assigned my blog. After what seemed like an eternity, I finally discovered that my blog was assigned to Taylor @ Greens and Chocolate. After a quick scan of her recipe list, I began clicking (and favoriting) for the yummy details. Everything looked AMAZING but one recipe in particular grabbed my attention (and crossed my mind more times than Ill ever admit):
Before we hop to it, I want to quickly note my adaptations to the original recipe as I recently received a few inquiries regarding such and this one serves as a simple illustration on how to veganize a recipe as well as how to substitute ingredients based on what is already in your house and/or own personal preference and taste.
To veganize this recipe, I first replaced the dairy butter with coconut oil. Coconut oil is my preferred replacement when a recipe calls for dairy butter, although a vegan butter or buttery spread, such a Soy Free Earth Balance, may also be used. Next, I replaced the egg with EnerG brand Egg Replacer. However, there are a several great vegan substitutes for eggs and it really comes down to what your specifically making. The last veganizing element of this recipe pertains to brand of sugar (as opposed to replacing an aminal or animal derived product with a vegan one). Cane sugar (white and brown) is often processed with animal bone. I used Wholesome Sweetener's brand Fair Trade Organic Brown Sugar (and frequently use the Sucanat as that is also vegan) and Trader Joes Turbinado Raw Sugar Cane.
In regards to substituting based on what's on hand and/or personal preference, I used Namaste Biscuits, Pie Crust, and More in place regular all purpose flour as the only all purpose flour I have in the house is Better Batter and I did needed it for another recipe. Along with this, I used a homemade caramel sauce in place of a commercial (or even premade vegan one) and included the recipe for such at the very end.
Thus far I have made the following recipe twice: once for myself and once for friends. On both occasions, I scaled down the scaled down the original recipe (I can't be trusted with a 9 x 13 pan's worth of anything) and baked my small batches in a 8 oz mini casserole baking dish and a mini tin loaf pan. Along with this, when I made this for just me, I opted for a thin cheesecake layer (via cutting the amounts listed below in half) in an attempt to make it a little less sinful and a little more waist friendly and used Quinoa Flakes in place of the oats in the topping.
Caramel Apple Cheesecake
Adapted from Greens and Chocolate
1/2 cups Namaste Biscuits, Pie Crust, & More
1/8 cup fair trade organic brown sugar
1/6 - 1 /4 cup coconut oil (room temp)
In medium bowl, combine the flour (I used Namaste Biscuits Pie Crust & More for this recipe) and brown sugar. Cut in the coconut oil with your fingers until mixture is crumbly and evenly distributed. Press into prepared pans and bake in preheated oven for 5 - 7 minutes, or until lightly browned.
for the cheesecake filling:
1 package Trader Joe's Vegan Cream cheese,
1/2 cup (or slightly less) turbinado sugar
1 eggs worth egg replacer
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
In a blender/food processor (I used the magic bullet) or by hand using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese with sugar, egg replacer and vanilla. Pour over warm crust.
for the apples:
1 granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and finely chopped
Few shakes of apple pie spice
1 Tbs turbinado sugar
Stir together diced apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, and sugar. Spoon evenly over cheesecake mixture.
for the streusel topping:
1/4 cup fair trade organic brown sugar
1/4 cup Namaste Biscuits, Pie Crust, & More
1/8 cup Trader Joes Gluten Free Oats
2 Tbs coconut oil (room temperature)
In a small bowl, combine all ingredients with your hands. Sprinkle evenly over apple mixture.
Bake 30 - 40 minutes in pre-heated oven, then drizzle with caramel sauce and let cool.
*** BONUS RECIPE ***
needed for the recipe above, which allows for gluttonous caramel dipping as you see fit with the leftovers.
Homemade Caramel Sauce
1/4 cup Vegan Soy Free Earth Balance
1/2 cup fair trade organic brown sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1/4 cup brown rice syrup
1/4 tsp bourbon vanilla extract
1/2 tsp pure maple extract, optional
Candy thermometer, required
Glass jar with lid
Place all ingredients EXCEPT extracts in a saucepan that's big enough to accommodate your candy thermometer in that when attached to the side of the pan, the point is not touching the bottom but will reach 2" down into mixture.
Stir mixture to combine and bring it to a boil over medium high heat, stirring often. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium, attach candy thermometer to side of pot, and continue to cook while continuously stirring. When mixture reaches 230F, remove from heat and stir in the extracts. Carefully pour into glass jar and allow to cool. Tightly secure lid and store in refrigerator until ready to use.
To use: Place lid covered jar in hot water until sauce becomes pourable.