There’s an old English nursery song that I always think of when I see mulberries.
I guess it was this little ditty that gave me the false idea that mulberries grow on bushes. Nice little bushes that can be reached from the ground and even a child could go out and pick them.
I don’t think I even laid eyes on a real mulberry until I was well past nine years old. That changed when we moved out in the country and found several large TREES with blackberry-looking-things growing on them. We tried gathering these berries a few different ways, one of which was laying sheets under the tree and shaking the trunk with the tractor. It wasn’t very successful. We gave up after a year or two.
I hate it when the mulberries ripen, because it seems like such a waste not to gather them. The winds blow them down and they quickly get trampled by people and animals alike. This year, there were so many and they looked so good that I had to try again.
For the first picking I lugged Dad’s three-legged ladder over and pulled the branches over my head so I could reach the lowest ones. That yielded about 3 cups, some very stained fingers and a purple step ladder. The second time, I climbed into the tractor bucket and Anna lifted, lowered and moved me about to the best places. We got four cups from that. Not bad, really, but nothing compared to the amount of berries left on the tree high up in the branches. Oh well! We couldn’t reach them anyway.
Now the question was, what to do with them? I learned from previous experience that mulberries mold very quickly – within three days if chilled, so I had to use them fast.
I just have this thing with berries and cheesecake…Sorry, I know it’s not very original, but it’s just so good! This one happens to be gluten free (though I never even thought about that when I made it) and is sweetened with coconut sugar and raw honey. You could almost say it was a raw food cheesecake…if you used raw cream cheese and cream. Unfortunately, I didn’t have that on hand.
The crust -
1 c. almonds
1 c. unsweetened coconut
3 T. coconut oil or butter
3 T. coconut sugar
1/4 t. cinnamon (optional)
Blend almonds and coconut in processor until nuts are fine. Add sugar and coconut oil. If it doesn’t hold together when you pinch it, add a little more oil or butter. Pat into a 9 inch cheesecake pan.
The filling -
16 oz cream cheese
1/2 c. honey
1 T. vanilla
1/2 c. cream
Whip together on high until combined and the cream thickens. Spoon half of mixture onto crust. Layer 1 – 2 cups of mulberries over the top and repeat with remaining cream cheese mixture and berries. Chill and serve.
My Dad loves crust. So do I. Crust makes cheesecake what it is…in my opinion. :D
Cutting into it marbled the colors. Yum!
If you happen to have mulberries and happen to want to pick them and happen to make this cheesecake and happen to have leftovers, you MUST eat them the next day. Trust me on this. I saved mine for the day after the next day and the berries were already going bad. Sadness…
I’m glad I tried to be resourceful and pick the mulberries again this year, but you know what? I think it will be another decade or so before I feel bad about it again.