I'm already one week into my sugar-free month and I haven't gone postal yet. Woo. (In fact, I'm feeling pretty awesome).
For once, I was actually quite excited to start this sugar-free month. There are lots of events coming in which I would have eaten sugar, but to be honest there always are, so there is never a good month to do it in. I decided I just had to do it.
This recipe is raw, vegan, gluten-free and dairy-free, and has no added sugar whatsoever. The only sweetness comes from the dates and the fruits. As for the 'creme patisserie' filling, it's actually made with blended young coconut meat. It's gorgeous.
It takes a little practice to open these bad boys, and there are a couple of ways of doing it. I use a serrated knife to create a square of 'weak points' before hammering a heavier-duty knife into one of them and prizing a lid open. Be careful when you do this! If you're not sure, check out some tutorials on Youtube.
It does matter if you use a young coconut or a hairy supermarket one: the meat inside is a lot more jelly-like, which is what you want for a smooth filling. Also they're full to the brim of refreshing coconut water, so it's like having an extra treat.
Ready? Let's go.
Ingredients for Crust:
-250g nuts (I used 50g pecans and 200g almonds)
-8 medjool dates
-2tbsp coconut oil, melted
Ingredients for Creme Patisserie Filling:
-The flesh from 2 young coconuts
-3tbsp of the coconut water
-The scraped seeds of a vanilla bean
Ingredients for Topping:
-Your favourite fruits (the more colourful, the better)
1) Line the bottom of a loose-bottomed tart tin with a disc of baking parchment and grease the sides with a little of your melted coconut oil.
2) Throw the nuts into a food processor and chop until crumbly-looking. Then add the dates and the coconut oil and continue to blend until just starting to stick together.
3) Pack this mixture evenly into your tart tin, trying not to eat any of it as you go...
4) Make the raw creme patisserie by blending the coconut flesh, water and vanilla until smooth. Pour it into your prepared raw tart case and chill in the fridge for a couple of hours, or overnight.
5) When you're ready, chop up your fresh fruits and go bananas (see what I did there?) decorating your tart.
6) Serve, and enjoy.
As you can see, this recipe is also super-easy. Use any soft fruits you like: here I used strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, a white nectarine and a kiwi. I was going to use an orange nectarine for extra colour, but I accidentally picked up white ones. I don't think it looks bad at all, though.