vanilla cheesecake with chocolate crust, strawberries, cacao nibs + pistachios

Every part of this is epic. Chocolate cookie crust. Creamy vanilla cashew cheesecake. Strawberries topping it all off. I was going to put this recipe in my COOKBOOK (it is still extremely exciting for me to type that word) but I reached over 15,000 likes on facebook yesterday and thought "Hey, these guys deserve something special for being so freaking amazing, loving and supportive". So here ya go.

It kind of tastes like a giant Oreo, plus strawberries. Eeeexxxccellent. You know what else is excellent? The fact that every single recipe in my upcoming book is going to be just as awesome as this one. I'm not kidding around - I am putting my ALL into this book because I really want it to be a practical tool in the kitchen, as well as a powerful one to impress. Wink wink. Also, I am perfectionist and have to be proud of what I create. There will not be one boring or mediocre recipe in the entire {un}cookbook. That's my promise!

The toppings for this cake are optional but they make it so perdy, don't ya think? I'll be keeping it in the freezer until Saturday, when I'll be hosting a raw vegan dessert party. Yes; that IS the best four word combination possible. As you know, I've been making at least one dessert recipe every day and I figured I can't eat them all - as much as I'd like to - so I may as well share them! Other ways to give away loads of desserts: I'm going to be catering the desserts for a friends party next weekend, and also handing out my extra recipes to the homeless people downtown. Wholesome nutrition for everyone!

vanilla cheesecake with chocolate crust, strawberries, cacao nibs + pistachios 

1 cup pecans
1 cup dates
2 tablespoon cacao powder

1 cup each of cashews, pine nuts, shredded coconut, and dates
1/2 cup water, as needed
Seeds from one vanilla bean (and/or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
2 tablespoons each of maple syrup and melted coconut oil

2 tablespoons cacao nibs
2 tablespoons pistachios, roughly chopped

To make the crust: pulse the pecans in your food processor until they become a rough flour. Add the dates and cacao and process until it begins to stick together. Press into the bottom and halfway up the sides of a small spring form pan (mine was about 6 inches) and put in the fridge. 

To make the cheesecake: blend all the ingredients until smooth and thick. Pour into your crust and then refrigerate overnight so it can set and the flavours can develop. Two days is even better. Decorate with the toppings and enjoy!