Sharon of the Dacha Project taught us how to make vegan pumpkin cheesecake at the "Thank You America" House in Ithaca on July 29th, 2009. Hang out with some Ithaca vegans while they collaborate on a recipe, share vegan tips and chat about strategies for sustainable living. Join the Facebook group to find out about future Vegan Cooking Skillshares:

The Ithaca Freeskool brings people together to equalize the distribution of knowledge and confidence with an emphasis on skills and issues of local importance. Check out the calendar for free classes, discussion groups, skill shares, projects, and events hosted in a non-intimidating, informal, radical, creative, and fun environment. Volunteer to teach a class or start a Freeskool in your community!

Video and Music by Shira Golding

Learn more about The Dacha Project:

The Complete Recipe from Sharon:

New & Improved Vegan Pumpkin Cheesecake

Crust (you can also buy a prepared graham cracker crust if you feel like lazing it a bit or are in a hurry!)
- 24 whole graham crackers
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 cup margarine, melted

Place the graham crackers into a plastic bag and use a rolling pin to make fine crumbs.

Pour the crumbs into a bowl and add the sugar and melted margarine. Stir well. Note: We found that adding a few spoonfuls of tofutti cream cheese helped to add integrity to the crumb-consistency – it was a bit too dry given what the recipe called for.

Pour the mix into a pie pan and use your hands or the back of a large spoon to press the mixture into the bottom and sides of the pie pan. Makes enough for 3 pie crusts!

1st Layer
- 8 ounces Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese (look for the non-hydrogenated version in the yellow container)
- 12 ounces light firm silken tofu (or extra-firm)
- 1/2 cup agave nectar (or sugar)
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Put the ingredients in a food processor and puree until completely smooth.It should be silky smooth – not chalky or lumpy. Spread mixture into the bottom of the crust.

2nd Layer
-12 oz. firm silken tofu, pureed
-8 oz. nondairy cream cheese (Tofutti or a tofu cream cheese from your local deli)
- 1 cup canned pumpkin
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3 Tbsp. flour
- 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
- 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda

Do the same as above – puree ingredients in the food processor & spread over the lemon layer. Bear in mind that the pie will rise during baking! Bake at 350°F for 60 minutes. Allow to cool for 30 minutes, cover with plastic wrap or the top of the pie container.

This should make enough for around 3 pies!

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