Monday, April 9, 2012

Easter Dinner: Gluten-free, Egg-free, Dairy-free (almost), Soy-free, Pork-free, Corn-free

I have been spending the last four months teaching myself allergy-free cooking.  When it came time to plan Easter dinner, I was up for the challenge.

And of course, I started planning this holiday meal with dessert!   Since I love to eat great food and having to switch to allergy free cooking for my husband, I refuse to not enjoy delicious, flavorful meals.  And to me, Easter dinner means traditional, New York style cheesecake for dessert.  So my hunt began with finding a method to create just that.  

Lemon Orange Chevre Cheesecake

And of course, who doesn't want a mouth watering cut of well cooked barbecue with all the trimmings?  Umm, makes me hungry just looking....

Texas Barbecue Brisket, Garlic Roasted Red Potatoes, Pan Roasted Asparagus with Almonds

Lemon Orange Chevre Cheesecake

  • 4 six oz. pkgs chevre goat cheese, room temperature
  • 2 fresh lemons
  • 1 jar sugar-free orange marmalade
  • 1 cup unroasted cashews
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 2 T. tapioca starch (similar to corn-starch in allergy free section of grocery store)
  • 1 1/2 t. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • pinch of salt
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Zest the lemons.  Put zest into a small bowl.  Add sugar and tapioca starch to the bowl as well as the salt.  Stir well to blend. Press the zest with the back of a spoon to release oil into the dry ingredients.  Let sit.
  3. Measure cashews into liquid measuring cup. Cover cashews with water and allow to sit for at least 20 minutes.
  4. In a 9'' springform pan, press in the crust* to cover the bottom evenly and halfway up the sides.  Pierce dough with fork.  Bake in oven for 12-15 minutes, watching so the crust does not get too brown.  Remove from oven to cool.
  5. While the crust bakes, cream the chevre in mixing bowl. Add almond milk and mix.  Add vanilla and mix throughly.  Add the lemon peel-sugar mixture and blend throughly.
  6. Pour cashews with their soaking water into a food processor or blender.  Blend until consistency of smooth peanut butter.  Add this to the cheese mixture and whip with electric mixture until well incorporated.
  7. Pour into the crust, smoothing the filling until level. Bake for about an hour or until the center is well set.  You can insert a butter knife into the center to check.  The knife should be almost clean when you pull it out.
  8. Turn the oven off leaving the cheesecake in the oven with a wooden spoon inserted in the door to allow the heat to diminish slowly.   After an hour, remove from oven, cover and chill overnight.
  9. About an hour before you wish to serve, remove cheesecake from refrigerator and run a knife in between crust and sides of pan.  Release the spring and remove side of pan. 
  10. In medium saucepan over low heat, add 2/3 cup of orange marmalade and heat until the marmalade melts completely.
  11. Pour heated marmalade glaze onto the top center of the cheesecake spreading with a pastry brush until the entire top of the cheesecake is glazed.  You can add fresh fruit to decorate the top of the cheesecake at this point. Return to refrigerator to set the glaze.
  12. When ready to serve, slice with large knife and loosen crust from bottom of pan with a spatula or pie server.  After removing the first piece, slide the server under the next piece from the side rather than from the back for easier removal.

Cheesecake loaded with pieces of lemon zest; tangy sweet. 

* Crust recipe coming up next!

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