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Hidden Berry Dessert Squares

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  • Makes 16 2-inch squares

This vegan, no-bake variation on lemon bars is made with a fluffy sweet potato filling that sets over a layer of ‘hidden’ fresh berries. A date-sweetened crumble is used for both the crust and for a sweet, slightly crunchy garnish.

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Ingredients

Crumble
  • 2 cups dates or date paste
  • 1½ cups whole grain bread crumbs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 pinches sea salt
Cream Layer
  • 2 pounds unpeeled sweet potatoes, baked until tender (about 3 cups mashed)
  • 3–4 tablespoons pure cane sugar
  • 1½ tablespoons lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups mixed fresh berries, plus more for garnish

Instructions

  1. Place the dates in the bowl of a food processor, and pulse to break into small bits. Add the bread crumbs, vanilla, and salt, and pulse to the texture of coarse sand.
  2. Reserve ¼ cup of the crumble for topping, and press the rest of it into the bottom of an 8-inch square baking dish. Press down to make an even, compact base layer. Transfer dish to refrigerator to chill for 20 to 30 minutes.
  3. Scoop the interior of the sweet potatoes into the bowl of a food processor, and discard potato skins. Add sugar, lemon zest, and vanilla to the sweet potato. Purée to a smooth, creamy texture.
  4. Remove the baking dish from the refrigerator, and spread a layer of fresh berries over the base layer. Cover the berries evenly with all of the sweet potato puree, and smooth the top with a spatula. Sprinkle the reserved crumble on top.
  5. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or until ready to serve. To serve, cut into 16 squares, and garnish with fresh berries.

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about the author

Darshana Thacker

Darshana Thacker is chef and culinary project manager for Forks Over Knives. A graduate of the Natural Gourmet Institute, she is the author of Forks Over Knives: Flavor! She created the recipes for Forks Over Knives Family and was a lead recipe contributor to the New York Times bestseller The Forks Over Knives Plan. Her recipes have been published in The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook, Forks Over Knives—The Cookbook, Forks Over Knives: The Plant-Based Way to Health, and LA Yoga magazine online. Visit DarshanasKitchen.com for more.

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