Sweet Success!


My Father-in-law and my mother both have milk sensitivities, so I enjoy challenging myself to make delicious foods (mostly desserts) that contain no dairy. Last week was my hubby's birthday and his parents invited us to their place to celebrate. I, of course, would bring dessert. What is my hubby's most favorite dessert in the who world? Cheesecake. So thus I was presented with my most challenging dessert to date. Is it even possible to make a cheesecake non-dairy? I decided to find out.

After exploring the health food section of our local Safeway, I think my hubby discovered that Tofutti makes a product called "Better Than Cream Cheese" that is a nondairy cream cheese. Ah ha! But could you bake with it? One of the challenges with not using dairy is that the non-dairy substitutes do not always hold up in the baking process like their dairy counterparts. The only way to find out was to try.

I whipped it up, tossed it in the oven and waited. I was a bit worried when I took it out because it did not seem to set up like a normal cheesecake, maybe I should have added an extra egg? Too late now... so I let it cool and then chill in the fridge. The next day I took it out and it seemed that success was near. It set!

The next challenge was to decorate it. I had never decorated a cheesecake before. I decided to try some chocolate. I had never worked with chocolate as a decoration before, so there was yet another challenge. I had visions of elaborate, delicate chocolate bows, but time and common sense caused me to keep it simple. So a few chocolate plaques and some strawberry topping and voila! A beautiful non-dairy cheesecake that did in fact taste very much like a "normal" cheesecake!

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