Avocados are a fruit that is native to Central and South America and are believed to have been cultivated for over 10,000 years. They are a highly nutritious food and contain lutein, protein, vitamin E, iron, potassium, niacin and healthy polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats.
Although avocados are mostly known for their use in savoury dishes such as salads and the dip guacamole, they can also be used to produce a delicious and creamy filling for vegan desserts. They can be used in desserts such as mousse or to produce a cheesecake like topping that is more nutritious than a standard dairy based versions.
When buying avocados they should be firm but give slightly if gently squeezed. Only chose fruits that have unblemished skins. Hard, unripe fruits will take 7-10 days to ripen but this process can be accelerated by placing them into a paper bag with a banana. Keeping avocados in the fridge will slow down the ripening.
This avocado chocolate tart is a delicious vegan dessert that is also gluten free. The base is created using nuts but this could also be created using biscuts as you would for a traditional cheesecake. The tart can be topped with grated chocolate, chocolate curls or fresh fruit.
Ingredients for the Avocado Chocolate Tart
- 300g (8.5oz) mixed nuts (these can be any nuts and you can use just one type if preferred)
- 200g (5.5oz) medjool dates
- 4 medium ripe avocado
- 200g (5.5oz) cocoa powder
- 2 vanilla pods, seeds only
- small amount of raw chocolate, (optional)
1. Any type of container can be used to make the tart as it does not need to be cooked. Unless you are using a loose bottomed cake tin any container will need to be lined with cling film (plastic wrap) so that the tart can be removed. Line the container by using long lengths of cling film that can be laid over the tart as it sets and then held to lift in out when you are ready to serve.
2. Using the pulse function if possible grind the nuts in a food processor until they are finely chopped. Add the dates to the food processor and process until the mixture sticks together.
3. Press the nut and date mixture into the lined container to form the tarts crust and cover with cling film. Place into the fridge while you prepare the filling.
4. Remove any crust crumbs from the food processor bowl. Place the avocados, vanilla and cacao powder into the food processor and blend until smooth and well combined.
5. Pour the filling over the base and then place the tart into the fridge overnight to set. If preferred it can also be set by placing in the freezer for an 1-2 hours.
6. The tart can be topped with some grated raw chocolate, a sprinkling of cacao powder or fruit if you like or served with soya cream or ice cream.