Prep: 40 minutes
Chilling time: 4 hours
Total: 4 hours 40 minutes
Grain-Free and Vegan.
With inspiration from the Marbled Pumpkin Gingersnap Tart in The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook
, and Comfy Belly's Raw Chocolate Cheesecake
This recipe has several steps – making the squash puree, soaking the cashews, toasting and cooling the nuts (optional), and chilling the assembled tart for several hours – so you'll want to begin this project a day ahead or early in the day. The tart keeps well airtight and refrigerated for three or four days, and the flavor only improves. It can also be wrapped snugly and frozen; defrost before serving.
I use homemade butternut squash puree in the filling, as the flavor is more clean and fresh than the canned stuff. To make butternut puree, cut a butternut squash in half lengthwise. Leave the seeds in (they're easier to scrape out post-baking) and place the squash halves cut-side down on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake at 350ºF until the squash is soft and collapsing, about 45 minutes. Let cool enough to handle, scrape out the strings and seeds and discard. Scrape out the flesh, discarding the skin, and puree in a blender or food processor until silky smooth. The puree will keep in the fridge for up to several days, or it can be frozen for future uses.
I prefer the flavor of lightly toasted nuts in the crust, though if you prefer to go raw, or are short on time, you can skip this step. To toast the nuts, place the pecans and almonds on a smallish, rimmed baking sheet and toast in a 325ºF oven or toaster oven until fragrant and slightly darkened. Do make sure they're completely cool before proceeding, lest you end up with steamy nut butter.
All ounce measurements are by weight.
Nutritional values are based on one of eight servings.