End of winter blood orange & cashew tart

I am a blogger for eight months now, and lately I've been thinking about my style. I feel it is kind of not there yet. I know what I like and don't like in life. My taste is very specific. That goes for music, clothing, travels, tv series, people, but also things like furniture, ceramics, flowers and food. It's all there in my head, how I want it to be, but one way or another, I can't see it here on the blog yet.

My style has developed gradually and I am certain that it will continue to do so. It hasn't been always like this though. When I was a teenager I was really uncertain about these things. I copied other people's taste in clothing or hair, because I just wasn't sure who I was. I think most of us recognize this. 

I'd lie if I would say I never feel this way anymore. Because occasionally I still do. Yes, I now know far better who I am and what I want, but I sometimes feel vulnerable when I look at other food bloggers. They seem to have established their style, while I am still searching.

For the Love of Pie is such a personal space and that makes a person doubt from time to time. But I am sure I'll get where I want to be someday, because what really counts is that I am here. I am sharing my passion for food with you and being part of this food bloggers community, where I feel at home. 

“Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take a while. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.”
― Ira Glass

So let's talk about this blood orange tart. Winter is over and spring is here (Yay! *Does a little dance*). However, spring produces isn't really in town yet. I've already seen asparagus, so definitely want to buy those next week, and also the first rhubarb, but it is still very expensive and that tells me it's not the right time yet. We have to be patient. At the same time, all those winter products are almost out the door.

So what to make or what to cook if you are all for seasonality? Then this week I stumbled upon a batch of  beautiful, dark blood oranges which were 40 percent off in my organic store. I've been wanting to make a raw 'cheesecake' for a long time now, and this seemed like the perfect moment. It has a spring feel to it while still keeping in line with the season's produce.

Healthy you say? YES! This tart is raw, which means that the vitamins, minerals and enzymes are still present in the products you use to make this dessert. When you eat a piece of it, you have a handful of nuts, seeds, fruits, coconut oil and honey in your belly. There's nothing wrong with that people! And I promise you, it tastes amazing. The bottom is just like eating a cookie. It's crunchy and sweet because of the dates, the cream reminds me of the creamsicles I had as a child (now I think of it, try pouring the cream into popsicle molds this summer, and dip them in chocolate! I bet it tastes great!), and the topping is sheer pleasure for your taste buds. Pomegranates, blood oranges with a little coconut milk. I mean, what else is there to say? So I hope you are inspired to make this tart. You can't mess up the recipe. I assure you.

Some notes:

- My tart isn't that tall since I used a 20cm/8 inch spring form tin. So if you want to have higher one, use a smaller spring form. 
- When there aren't any blood oranges around where you live, or you want to make this in a different season you exchange it for other types of fruit: oranges, lemons, mangos, strawberries. Experiment!
- Freeze the tart well. At least 3 hours.
- Remove from the freezer 30 minutes before eating. Run a sharp knife under hot water to get nice and clean slices.

Isn't he the best? 

Blood orange & pomegranate cashew tart (gf + v)

| makes 1 tart |

1 cup walnuts
1/2 cup almonds
2 tbsp sunflower seeds
11 fresh (medjool) dates
1 tbsp coconut oil
a pinch of seasalt
for the cream:
1 1/3 cup cashew nuts, soaked overnight
2 tbsp (raw) honey (or maple syrup for vegans)
1 cup fresh blood orange juice (about 3 oranges)
zest of 3 blood oranges
1 tbsp melted coconut oil
optional: a vanille pod, seeds scraped
for the topping:
1/2 cup pomegranate arils
2 blood oranges
2 tsp of coconut milk (the thick cream on top of the can)

Start with the crust. Place the nuts, seeds and the seasalt in a food processor. Pulse to chop until they are chunky (or until they are to your liking). Add the dates and coconut oil and pulse again until it all comes together. Press the mixture firmly into the spring form tin. Make sure the base is even throughout. Set aside in the fridge while you go on to make the filling. Clean the blender or food processor.

Carefully melt the coconut oil in a small saucepan. Place the soaked cashews, blood orange juice, zest, honey, vanilla seeds, and the coconut oil in a blender. Blend until very smooth. It may take a moment, so be patient. Pour the filling over the crust and place the tart in the freezer for about half an hour or until solid.

Continue with the topping. After having cleaned your blender, add the pomegranate arils, two peeled blood oranges, and the coconut milk (make sure you use the cream that sits on top of the milk). Again, blend until smooth. Get the tart out of the freezer and pour the topping onto the cream. It won't mix because the filling has already set. Place the tart back into the freezer.

Remove from freezer half an hour before serving. Decorate the cake with fresh fruit, some coconut cream or edible flowers for example. Cut into slices with a warm sharp knife.