Raw Vegan Chocolate and Caramel Birthday Cake

No birthday is complete without an incredibly large slice of cake. And though store-bought and sugar-laden might be acceptable when you’re nine years old, with each passing year, our palates – and our waistlines – require a little something more sophisticated. This recipe is not only scrumptious, it’s gluten free, vegan and raw! Using milk alternatives and natural sweeteners like almond milk and toffee-like medjool dates, each slice is delicious and nutritious delight.

Ingredients:
2 cups raw almonds
1 cup raw cashew pieces
1/2 cup cacao powder
1/2 teaspoon raw sea salt
15 medjool dates, pitted
3-4 tablespoons raw nut milk
5-6 medjool dates, pitted
1 1/2 cup raw cashew pieces, soaked overnight
1/4 cup raw nut milk (or water)
1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Method:
Line the bottom of three 4″ spring form pans with parchment paper; set aside. In a food processor, blend the almonds, cashews, cacao powder and salt until the mixture resembles a fine meal; about 1-2 minutes. Add the dates and nut milk; pulse until the mixture forms a smooth but slightly crumbly dough. Divide the dough evenly between the prepared pans and press; chill in freezer for 45-60 minutes.

Place the dates in a small bowl and cover with water; soak for 10-15 minutes. In the container of a high powered blender, blend the soaked cashews, raw nut milk, vanilla bean and sea salt for 1-2 minutes. Add the soaked dates and blend until extremely smooth; about 2 minutes. Transfer frosting to an air tight container and refrigerate until ready to use.

To assemble the cake, carefully remove the cake layers from the pans. Place one layer in the middle of a cake stand and smother, generously, with frosting. Add the remaining layers and do the same. Transfer to freezer for 45 minutes, so the cashew cream hardens; this will make it easier for you to ice the entire cake. Smooth remaining frosting onto the cake. Serve immediately or transfer to an air tight container and store in the freezer for up for 2 weeks.