I'm always blown away how 'food porn-ish' Pinterest, magazines, and blogs are as a whole. May the fattiest, most chocolatey recipe win. And it usually does (damn it). But with a little inventiveness, you'd be surprised how cute and sweet a healthy treat can be. Usually when people tell me how good the food photos look on the blog, it's the best praise I can get. Because it says they think the healthy food looks good! Not that the food looks healthy. So after I whipped up that chocolate peanut butter cream pie (um I mean skim milk pie!) I knew I needed to find a way to make more smart, healthy hostess approved desserts with agar agar. Which is why this strawberry shortcake is literally just strawberries and agar agar powder in the pink layer (and hello, strawberries=beauty booster). Are you jazzed about this? I clearly am!!!
And because maybe you need a little something to feel excited about too, scroll to the bottom of the post for a giveaway where I partnered with Welch's.
The coolest part of this tart is how the textures play off one another. The base, depending on what you use, provides a more savory, crumb taste and texture. When you mash a cookie or graham cracker or whatever down, it basically turns into a tiny shortcake. It's the same principle I use when I create crazy recipes like using Tostitos to make individual quiche crusts. The strawberry layer is really cool. It's like a creamier version of jell-o. I hate that I use that comparison, but it has tooth without feeling like rubber. And the cream. You've gotta do the cream. It really brings it all together for that strawberry shortcake feeling.
Healthy Vegan Strawberry Shortcake
makes 3 tarts, about 4 inch across, 1.5 inches deep
/// Ingredients ///
- 1 teaspoon agar agar powder
- 1 C water
- 1 1/2 C halved strawberries
- 3 medium sized Vegan cookies (1 per base) or ground nuts
- optional: coconut cream topping (get the recipe here)
/// Directions /// Add strawberry halves and water to a small pan on the stove. Cook until the strawberries are soft. Puree. Add agar agar powder. Stir to combine. Brig to a boil and reduce to a simmer for 5 minutes.
Create base cookie/nut/graham cracker layer by pressing in to pack it down. If you're using something other than a cookie, add a little butter (non vegan) or coconut oil (vegan) to get it to stick together. Yield on the side of less. You can always add more! After creating the base, pour in the strawberry mix and smooth to create a single layer. Bang the tart on the counter to get the bubbles to rise to the top. Chill in the fridge for several hours. Peel back tart liner. Top with more berries and coconut cream!
Note: Agar agar powder is not the same as agar agar flakes or sheets. They're the same product but do not equate to direct measurements of each other! You only need a tiny bit of powder in comparison.
The Giveaway: Welch's!
Welch's sent me a gorgeous basket of goodies earlier this year. And even though I'm not a juice person, holy cow, I am in love with the Farmer's Pick line from Welch's. These juices are unfiltered and cold-kettle batched. That means they have WAY more body and flavor than your usual juice. And now 4 of you can try all 3 flavors!
Disclosure: Welch's has sent me glorious goodies in the past. They are not compensating me for bragging about how their product tastes like the nectar of the gods or for doing this giveaway.
Dietitian Nutritionist. My husband Chris and I create food and beverage photos, videos, stopmotions and recipes. And they're really cool.