Fresh fig and sticky ginger cashew cream tart
( SERVES 12 )
Photo by Tam West
Serve this classic cashew cream raw tart as a plated dessert or cut into squares for an elegant dessert canape. If you don’t have activated almonds or brazil nuts, you can use other nuts, seeds or even a combination with oats, and if you don’t have time to activate, you can buy the nuts activated, or just use them raw. It will affect the texture slightly, but not too much.
Fresh figs are abundant right now, but the season is really short in New Zealand so I try to make the most of these delicious and incredibly nutritious fruits by putting them in salads, pizzas, desserts, smoothies and eating them simply as they are. I often grab one for my ride to work as I’m leaving the house (not the most mindful eating, but it makes the ride delicious). Feel free to substitute the figs with other fruit if you don’t have access to them, or they aren’t in season.
For the base
|1½ cups||Dried activated almonds, or brazil nuts|
|1½ cups||Pitted dates|
|¾ cup||Dried coconut, ground into a flour in the food processor|
|¼ tsp||Sea salt flakes|
|2 Tbsp||Coconut oil, cold-pressed and melted|
|1½ Tbsp||Dried ginger powder|
For the cashew cream filling
For the ginger syrup and figs
- For the base, blend almonds and dates together in a food processor until almost a couscous-like texture. Add the remaining base ingredients and pulse a few times until combined. The mixture should hold together well. Add 1–2 teaspoons of water if the mixture is too dry and crumbly. Line an approx 19cm x 26cm slice tin with plastic wrap (alternatively use a regular tart tin for a round tart). Press the mixture firmly into the tin (and up the sides if using a round tart tin). Place the base in the fridge while you make the filling.
- For the cream filling, drain and rinse cashews thoroughly. Blend all the filling ingredients, except the coconut oil, in a high-speed blender, being careful not to let it heat up. Blend until smooth — like the texture of a silky cream. Slowly pour in the coconut oil with the blender going until completely combined into the mixture. Pour on to the base and leave to set for at least 6-8 hours. Generally I leave it overnight just to be safe; alternatively you can place it in the freezer for a few hours to set in a hurry.
- To prepare the syrup, place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well. If you have a dehydrator, place in here for 6 hours at 46C until it forms a syrupy consistency. If you don’t have a dehydrator, place all the ingredients in a small pot on low heat until it reduces to a syrup.
- Once set, remove the tart from the tin and place on a cutting board, slice into 12 rectangular pieces, approx. 4.5 x 6.5 cm (keep in mind the width of your figs and adjust the width so they are not hanging off the edges). Gently place the sliced fig pieces along each slice as in the picture, then when ready to serve pour over the delicious ginger syrup.