This was made in anticipation for the holidays. The red and white are festive colours, plus who doesn't want (raw vegan) "cheesecake" at Christmas? Only the loonies. Watch out for them...

This cake is not only beautiful, it's delicious. The cashews create a rich, filling creaminess and when paired with fresh lemon juice, oranges and sweetened naturally, the result is practically divine. Impress all the skeptics - and non skeptics alike - with this at your next holiday dinner. Don't tell 'em it's healthy, raw, vegan and gluten-free until AFTER they've licked their plates clean and asked for seconds. Trust me - they will; or else they go in the loonie bin. I'm serious. But not really. But mostly.

My motto is "do what works for you" so here's a bunch of substitution options if this recipe doesn't quite fit your diet ideals: if you don't want or can't eat cashews, you can use fresh young coconut meat instead; or avocados, or any other nuts. Hemp seeds would even work. If you don't want nuts in the crust, use oats, seeds or buckwheat groats. If you can't have coconut oil, use cacao butter. If you don't like coconut nectar, use a syrup of dates and water. Bam! Anybody can make this work for them. Hallelujah to the heavens, amiright!?

I'm pretty much done with calling raw vegan "cheesecake" by that name... I prefer cream cake now. Although the inspiration comes from cheesecake, raw vegan cream cakes are just better in every way. They taste better, they're healthy, they're better for the planet, their ingredients aren't involved in the abuse of our animal pals... there're no down sides! So I'm tired of associating them with cheesecake... from now on - my "cheesecakes" will be cream cakes. It's also less confusing this way.

I'd like to say a big, warm thank you to all you lovely people who commented on my last post and emailed me about it. I know this blog is first and foremost about raw vegan recipes; but it's very therapeutic for me to let out what's going on inside my head. What becomes equally important when I share my emotions in a public space is the responses from you, which do SO MUCH to make me feel better. So many of you can relate, and that is extremely helpful and relieving to know. I think for a lot of you, it's good to know that YOU'RE not alone either! It makes me infinitely glad to realize we're all in this together, and that we can come together over our personal selves with healthful recipes. I am blessed. All my love to you. Let's eat cake.