You may be asking yourself a lot of questions right now.
Why is the title of this recipe so long?
What is Aquafaba?
How is there cauliflower in this delectable dessert?
When can I eat it?
To address the first question…there were just so many elements to this. I even considered describing the edge as ‘oreo crust’ since it strongly resembles the color and taste (ish) of oreos!
Second question, Aquafaba. If you are guilty of spending your evenings scrolling through Pinterest healthy recipes, you have likely come across this mysterious word. For me it evoked visions of a fabulous life in the sea, perhaps the name of a mermaid, aqua, fabulaaaa.
In fact, it’s just a nicer word for chickpea brine, aka that slimey goo that you drain out of cans of garbanzo beans and pour down the drain without a second thought. Who would have guessed that that goopy chickpea water stuff was actually something worth holding onto and a key part of vegan baking!
In the vegan world it’s being touted as miraculous vegan meringue magic. (Now there’s a blog post title)
All you have to do is treat the liquid like you would egg whites and whip them until stiff peaks form, then use it the way you would egg whites in most baking recipes! (I’m afraid to say ALL recipes because I don’t know that for a fact, but I believe it should work universally in place of egg whites). Oh and no, it doesn’t taste like chickpeas!
This recipe isn’t very time consuming, you make it and let it set it your fridge or freezer then have a slice whenever you feel like getting in one of your five a day! It even provides a healthy dose of good fats from nuts.
(For the record most petite slices would not actually fulfill the daily requirements of a serving of vegetables)
In terms of taste testers, I gave a large piece of this creation to my friend who shared it with her family. She claims her mom told her via text and in person how good it was, multiple times. Unless she was just being a really nice friend, that sounds like pretty good feedback to me!
If you feel like you want to skip the aquafaba layer today, you can simply omit the mousse ingredients and steps. I would recommend serving with some kind of fruit compote or topping to give it another texture and flavor though! Enjoy
- 2 cups raw walnuts
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- ¼ cup cocoa powder
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- 2 medjool dates pitted and chopped
- pinch of cinnamon
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 1 cup raw walnuts
- 1¾ cup steamed and cooled cauliflower (about half a head raw)
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- 8 medjool dates pitted and soaked
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- ¼ cup melted coconut oil
- 1 tsp ancho chili powder (optional)
- pinch salt
- liquid from one can of chickpeas
- ¼ tsp cream of tartar
- 6 oz dark chocolate
- 1 tbsp powdered sugar (optional)
- Line the bottom of an 8" springform pan with parchment paper
- Place walnuts in a food processor and blend until they reach a coarse, sandlike texture.
- Add in the rest of the crust ingredients and process until fully combined
- Press the crust into the bottom of the pan and using your hands try to distribute the mixture evenly on the bottom of the pan and up the sides (or go for the uneven look, whatever you're feeling!)
- Place the pan in the freezer
- Wipe out your food processor to prepare it for the filling
- Process the cashews and walnuts until they reach a fine powder
- Add in the cocoa powder, dates, maple syrup, cauliflower, vanilla and salt and process again until you see the creamy filling start to form. Add the chili powder if using.
- Add in the melted coconut oil and continue to blend until a very creamy texture is reached, can be up to 4 minutes depending on the strength of your food processor (you can also use a high powered blender)
- Pour the filling over the frozen crust and even the top before placing in freezer again to set
- Melt chocolate in the microwave or using a double boiler, stir until combined and then remove from heat
- Whip the chickpea brine and cream of tartart in a medium sized bowl with electric hand beaters until you form stiff peaks, about 5 minutes. If using the powdered sugar, blend in also.
- Once chocolate has cooled until it is no longer warm to the touch, fold into the aquafaba peaks and stir until a chocolate mousselike consistency has formed.
- Now you can pour this thin mousse topping on your cauliflower chocolate layer and refreeze.
- Remove from freezer 5-10 minutes before serving!