A few years ago, a friend passed along a recipe for a dairy-free cream pie that was so scrumptious that I’ve since taken the concept and adapted it to make other variations. It’s a delicious dessert that will wow a crowd of regular eaters as much as those vegans, gluten-free’rs, and raw foodies at your table. I wish I knew from where it originated, but I’ll just have to settle for telling you that I was not the original creator.
You can make the tart in advance all the way through step 2 and complete step 3 just before serving.
Banana and Coconut Cashew-Cream Tart
Makes 1 nine-inch tart
For Tart Shell:
- 1 1/2 cups whole pecans
- Pinch of coarse sea salt
- 1 1/2 cups pitted dates
- 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
- 1 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight and thoroughly drained
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup, and more to taste
- 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
- 3/4 cup desiccated coconut
- 3 or 4 ripe but firm bananas
1. Make tart shell: Coarsely chop pecans and salt in a food processor. Add dates; pulse until thoroughly combined, 15 to 20 seconds. Add syrup; pulse just until combined and mixture sticks together. Press nut mixture firmly and evenly into a 9-inch pie plate, wetting your fingers as needed. Set tart shell aside.
2. Make filling: Grind nuts to a coarse paste in a blender. Add water, syrup, and vanilla scrapings; blend until smooth, about 5 minutes, scraping sides as needed. Mixture should be the consistency of thick pancake batter. Set aside 2 tablespoons coconut; add remainder to blender, and process to combine. Pour into prepared shell, spreading evenly.
3. Thinly slice bananas on the bias; arrange in slightly overlapping rows, beginning at edge of tart. Sprinkle with reserved coconut; serve immediately.