Monday, 24 September 2012

Black Forest Cheezecake + a Birthday Picnic

Recently Planet Vegmel turned three! To celebrate there was a picnic at the Edinburgh Gardens, as well as our favourite new tradition of making a zine. This year's zine features secrets of not the inner North, and you should all download it!

I made the super awesome vausage rolls because I really wanted Wendy to try them (having spent the last six months in Beijing talking them up to her), but this meant bringing a gluteny savoury that K couldn't eat! To compensate, I went to extra special effort with my sweets contribution: vegan, gluten-free black forest cheezecake.

black forest cheezecake

This recipe was inspired by a piece of cake I had at the Heavenly Plate on a recent trip to Perth which was amazing and I was so excited to try making some sort of black forest cheezecake myself. This version isn't quite right, there are several changes I have in mind for the next iteration, but for a first attempt (and my first cheezecake in over a year) it was not bad at all.

I used the triple threat chocolate cheesecake in My Sweet Vegan as inspiration/guidance for proportions.

black forest cheezecake


1 packet of chocolate biscuits (I used the leda tim tam substitutes)
third of a cup of sugar (I used a mix of white and coconut sugars)
two tablespoons margarine

3 tubs of vegan cream cheese (approx 700g)
300g silken tofu
300g dark chocolate
three quarters of a cup of white sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
shake of salt

a can of berries, preferably cherries but mixed will do
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon cornstarch
quarter cup sugar
extra chocolate for drizzling


Crush the biscuits, mix with the third of a cup of sugar and the margarine. Add some extra chocolate in the form of cocoa if you like. Press into a lined 22 cm cheesecake or springform pan for a thin crust, or a smaller pan for a slightly thicker crust.

Mix together the cream cheese, tofu, vanilla extract, salt and the three quarter cup of sugar until smooth. Melt the chocolate and combine through until looking delightfully brown. Pour carefully into pan on top of crust, and drop the pan a time or two to smooth it out if necessary. Bake at 175C for about 50 minutes.

After it has cooled (I usually do this overnight), over heat bring together the can of berries (mostly drained, but with a little of the syrup), the cornstarch and the lemon juice with the remaining sugar. Stir over heat until it's come together like a jam, and let cool a bit. Then pour it over the cake. When this has cooled a little more, melt the remaining chocolate and drizzle it over. Serve and eat it, it's so good.

Changes I would like to make in the future: an extra berry layer on top of the base; a thicker base (maybe half again); something "white creamish" like a real black forest cake (maybe a white chocolate tofu layer); fresh cherries on top.