10 to 12 graham crackers (approximately 1 pack, plus a few more)
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons agave nectar, or other liquid sweetener
1/3 cup vegan margarine (e.g., Earth Balance),
plus 2 more tablespoons if You're from the Southern U.S. [u]Cheezecake Filling[/u]:
12 ounces silken tofu, firm or extra firm
8 ounces vegan cream "cheese" (e.g., Tofutti brand)
1 tablespoon vegan mayonnaise (e.g., Vegenaise)
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons arrowroot powder
5 tablespoons non-dairy milk (e.g., soy or almond)
2/3 to 3/4 cup sugar, depending on Your sweet tooth
1/4 cup blueberry syrup*, Agave Nectar, or other liquid sweetener [u]Topping[/u]:
2 cups fresh blueberries
1/4 to 1/3 cup blueberry syrup*
[u]Crust[/u]:1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Grind graham crackers in food processor or blender, or use the old-school method and crush up the crackers inside a plastic baggie, using a rolling pin or somesuch.
3. Mix in flour. Cut the sweetener and butter into the fine cracker crumbs.
4. When everything is mixed together, press into a 10" pie pan or 9" pan with deep sides. I use my bare hands and press it in tightly for a nice firm crust.
5. Pre-bake the crust for 5 to 7 minutes, then let it cool while You make the filling.
[u]Cheezecake Filling[/u]:1. In a blender or food processor, puree the tofu, cream "cheese", mayonnaise, lemon juice, and baking powder until smooth. Set aside.
2. Dissolve the arrowroot (or cornstarch) powder into the lukewarm or cold "milk." Water will work in place of the milk, if that's all You have. (see notes)
3. In a small saucepan, mix the sugar and liquid sweetener with the arrowroot liquid. Heat this mixture on medium to medium-high heat until bubbling, and keep stirring it to prevent the sugar from sticking and scorching in the pan.
4. Now add that pureed mixture from step #1 into the sugar mixture in the saucepan. Let this sweetness simmer on the stove, stirring constantly, for a few minutes to thicken. Keep on stirring, or whip it with a whisk to give Your arms a little workout.
5. Pour the filling mixture into the pre-baked pie crust, and bake at 350 degrees F for 25 to 35 minutes. Put some aluminum foil around the edges, or a lid on the pie pan, to prevent the crust from burning. (I baked mine for about 31 minutes total, until I saw that the filling didn't jiggle so much when I moved the pie around.)
6. Let the pie cool (on a rack would be nice) to room temp before putting into the refrigerator to chill. When the filling is cooled off enough for the pie pan to go in the fridge, it's ready to top with blueberries and syrup. Use the fattest, juiciest blueberries You can find... Frozen berries would probably work, but fresh off the bush is best. :)This pie is best left overnight (6 to 8 hours) to really firm up and let the flavors jive.
Serve and enjoy!
* Syrup can be made by adding a bit of water or liquid sweetener to blueberry jam/preserves, if in a pinch.
I have also tried using egg replacer powder and water, in the same amounts, instead of arrowroot...this has worked about the same as arrowroot to firm up the filling, but leaves a slightly gritty texture... Arrowroot or cornstarch, dissolved first in a bit of liquid (then heated on the stove before going into the rest of the filling) makes a better texture.
For the crust, I started with only 1/3 cup of butter to 12 full graham cracker sheets, and thought it might be too powdery...so I added 2 more tablespoons, which made a nice and buttery crust. I could have done with a less fatty crust, but where I live, buttery crusts will win people over.
Source of recipe: the development of the perfect cheesecake recipe + having lots of blueberries on hand