Serves one 9" cake
FOR THE CRUST:
* ¾ cup Pecans
* ¾ cup Walnuts
* ¼ cup Unsweetened Shredded Coconut (finely shredded works best)
* pinch of Sea Salt
* 3 Medjool Dates, pits removed
* 2 tablespoons Raw Cacao Powder (sub cocoa powder if you don’t have cacao)
* 1 tablespoon Coconut Oil
FOR THE GANACHE LAYER:
* ¾ cup Dark Chocolate Chips (use a brand that uses natural sweeteners, if you can)
* ¼ cup Coconut Oil
* ¾ cup Coconut Milk (canned)
* 3 tablespoons Raw Cacao Powder
* 1 teaspoon Vanilla
FOR THE CHEESECAKE LAYER:
* 3 cups Cashews, soaked overnight
* 1½ cups Almond Milk (coconut milk works too)
* 2 tablespoons Vanilla (you may only need 1 tablespoon if your vanilla is strong)
* ½ cup + 3 tablespoons Maple Syrup, divided
* ¼ teaspoon Sea Salt
* 2 tablespoons Sunflower Lecithin
* 2 teaspoons Lemon Juice
* ⅓ cup Coconut Butter (softened)
* ¼ cup Coconut Oil, divided
* ⅓ cup Raw Cacao Powder
Who are you when you smell rosemary? Do you disappear into a fortress of memory with garlicky roasted potato walls? Do you remember clutching a few hardy strands as you walked down a garden path somewhere in your childhood? Where does the scent take you? What do you feel? How has rosemary been a friend to you? And, more importantly, are you ready to put it in your Asian pear and apple crisp?
Just over a month ago, I made a blueberry pie for you. A sage blueberry pie, which was also a pie made on request for my downstairs neighbor Alice. Some of you will remember Alice from that post—remember my (selfish) disappointment as I realized she was coming to the end of her (ninety-five years long) life, that hospice was there with her, that, once again, I was living with death. Many of you rejoiced with me at the gift of my time with Alice, too. Because I did, ultimately, just suck it up and sit with her. Talk to the hospice workers. Look death in the face, and not leave. Again.
Of course, the emotional pull wasn’t anything like what I felt being with my mother when she was dying. This time, I could leave at any moment I wanted, and I barely knew Alice. But in the occasional visits we had in the past month, instead of dread, I actually found a lot of joy.
Full Recipe: thefirstyearblog.com/espresso-chocolate-chunk-brownies
-1 & ¼ cup all purpose flour
-1 tsp salt
-2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
-¾ cup chopped chocolate chunks or semi-sweet chocolate chips
-10 oz dark chocolate chips (equal to 1 & ¼ cup)
-2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
-3-4 tbsp espresso grounds or espresso powder
-1 cup sugar
-½ cup packed brown sugar
-5 large eggs, at room temperature
-2 tsp vanilla extract
-2 tsp espresso grounds or powder
-1 tbsp water
-½ tsp vanilla
-¾ to 1 cup powdered sugar
Close your eyes. Do you remember when things felt like magic? Go back. Before Trump. Before this impenetrable knot under your left shoulder blade because you spend too many nights editing photos and writing until midnight. Before heartbreak and death. Back.
You are two. You toddle down the hallway, one pudgy sweet hand against the wooden wall, one hand on your belly. Breathe. Feel. You have no idea that anything is not possible. Somewhere, you hear “Dress You Up in My Love”, because that is all anyone listens to: Madonna’s second album, Like a Virgin, came out last year, in 1984, and there is nothing but her. Anything is possible and Madonna is life.
You continue down the hall to the living room. The girls are laughing—Ruby Joy. Jade Moon. The second generation of the Alive Tribe—the quasi-commune-cult your parents were in when you were born. So much expressing and releasing. So much rebirthing. So much blue eyeliner. So much Madonna.
It’s so good, I actually wanted to slap someone’s mother. I also let out a few profanities in approval.
Ingredients for Fruit Topping
Sliced peaches and blueberries (or other fruit, optional)
Ingredients for Tart Crust
1 ¼ cup all purpose flour
½ cup + 1 tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg yolk
8 tbsp cold butter chopped into cubes
2-3 tbsp ice cold water
Ingredients for Cream Filling
1 block of cream cheese (8 oz), softened to room temperature
1 tbsp heavy cream
½ cup of granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground cardamom
Pinch of salt
Ingredients for Bourbon Salted Caramel
1 cup granulated sugar
5 ½ tbsp unsalted butter
½ can coconut cream
1/8 cup Bourbon
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp sea salt
Directions for Fruit Tart
Preheat your oven to 365 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a food processor or large bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
Add in the cubed butter and process until you have small pieces of butter running through. Add in the egg yolk and ice cold water (as needed) until your tart dough comes together. If using your hands, follow the same instructions using two knives or a pastry cutter.
Remove the dough to a well floured surface and form a ball.
Press the dough into your tart pan making sure that everything is even.
Depending on your oven, you will bake the tart crust anywhere from 12-18 minutes – until the edges of the crust are golden.
Remove crust from oven and let cool completely.
Directions for Filling
Combine all ingredients and mix until creamy and completely smooth. This will take roughly 4-5 minutes.
Directions for Caramel
In a deep sauce pan over medium heat, melt your sugar, stirring with a plastic/silicon spatula or whisk.
Once your sugar melts/dissolves into a light amber color, slowly add in the butter and stir until melted.
*The mixture will bubble when the butter is added.
Once the butter has melted, slowly add in the coconut cream while the sauce pan is over the heat.
Once incorporated, let the mixture come to a boil for 1 minute. Add in the bourbon during this boil.
Remove from the heat, add in the vanilla, and stir in the salt.
Let cool and thicken completely.
Once the tart crust has cooled completely, fill it with the cream filling. Mix in a little bit of the caramel and swirl.
Assemble the fruit in the design of your choice.
Drizzle with caramel and add a dusting of powdered sugar (optional).