When I first started making vegan and healthier treats I wanted to create recipes that people would recognise and be familiar with. When I looked for the UK’s most popular desserts, the cherry bakewell tart was listed in The Telegraph as the Nation’s favourite bake. That made me think about how I could swap ingredients like butter and sugar and still create a tasty plant-based dessert.
I normally use buckwheat groats and almonds in my bakewell tart but these aren’t always easy to find. Almonds aren’t as sustainable as oats, so I substituted those with Hamlyns pinhead oatmeal and they perform well.
To make the base:
- Soak the dates. Jo recommends using pitted dates and soaking them in boiling water because it softens them quicker. Leave them for approx. 20 minutes before draining.
- Place oats and desiccated coconut into a food processor and blitz for a minute to break down the pinhead oats a bit.
- Add cashew nuts and blitz again.
- Add maple syrup, coconut oil and dates and blitz again until it all starts to come together.
- Gradually add water 1 spoon at a time whilst the processor is on, so you can see when the mix starts to really come together. It should stick together in clumps but not be soggy.
- Once it’s at this stage, tip the mixture into a lined tart tin and press down using your hands.
- Place in the freezer whilst you prepare the other sections.
To make the vegan ‘marzipan’
- Soak the dates and drain before placing in a food processor with almond butter and coconut oil (it’s best to melt this first for 10 secs in the microwave).
- Blitz ingredients together and they will usually really stick together very quickly.
- Add water and blitz again until you get a paste-type consistency.
- Add almond extract and blitz once more.
- Remove base from freezer and spread with ‘marzipan’ using a spoon.
- Place back in the freezer and prepare your jam.
For your Cherry Chia seed jam
- Tip the cherries into a small saucepan and add water and maple syrup.
- Allow to simmer for about 10 minutes until cherries are soft and liquid starts to turn syrupy.
- Turn the heat off and add the chia seeds. Mix with a spoon and leave to properly cool and for the chia seeds to absorb some of the liquid.
- Once completely cool mix again and remove the tart from the freezer.
- Spread cherry chia jam evenly over the marzipan.
- Place in freezer for 5/10 mins to allow the jam to firm up a bit more.
- Store in the freezer if not eating immediately, or remove, cut and serve.
Jo is a mum, wife, long-distance runner, writer and the creator of Jo’s Healthy Cupboard, based in the North East of Scotland.
She uses her platform to inspire others to make small changes towards a healthier, happier and more sustainable lifestyle by sharing practical tips, recipes, relevant products and daily thoughts.