Posts Tagged With: pie

Vegan Month of Food, Day 15: Cherry Delight

Cherry Delight was another staple of childhood. There were so many different ways to make it that we managed to not get totally sick of it like we did with some other desserts we were intensely fond of.

Take, for instance, the dessert we simply called “strawberry stuff”. I don’t remember exactly all that was in it except that involved strawberries, whipped cream, graham crackers, and walnuts, and you kept it in the freezer. It was so good that we made it all the time until I got to the point where TO THIS DAY the thought of eating it makes me say “blegh”. And it’s been at least 15 years since I last had it.

Take One of vegan Cherry Delight

Take One of vegan Cherry Delight

Anyway, Cherry Delight was variable enough that it never went the way of the Strawberry Stuff. I never really gave much thought to veganising it, actually, until I became stumped for layered desserts that weren’t pie or crisp. In all honesty, this recipe isn’t quite right. I tested it a while ago and I had grand and glorious plans to perfect it, but I lack time to so do. So I’m going to share what I did anyway (it was good, just not quite the right texture) and later on I hope to update with a more authentic version.

This will make 2 pies if you use prepared graham cracker crusts, or a 13×9 pan with your own homemade graham cracker or cookie crust. If you want a single pie, refer to the amounts in red.

Start with your whipped cream. You’ll want 3 cups total, so if you use a prepared whip, that’s the amount you need. If you want to make your own whip, here’s what I did.

I went to this pudding recipe for ideas.
Here’s what I did.
2 (1) cups lite coconut milk (one can, plus enough water to make 2 cups)
1 (1/2) c soy milk
2/3 (1/3) cup corn starch
1 (1/2) tsp cocoanut extract
Put cornstarch in a saucepan and stir in liquid ingredients a tiny bit at a time to avoid lumpage. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until just thickened and smooth. Put into a container in the fridge and chill for around an hour. It should be partially set, but not totally gelatinous.

Take it out, put it in a food processor and process until smooth. A Vitamix would probably also work here. After I broke it up with the food processor I used my hand mixer in a bowl to whip more air into it, but using a Vitamix would probably negate that step.

In a separate bowl, beat together:
8 (4) oz softened cream cheese (I used Tofutti)
1/2 (1/4) c sugar

Beat together until smooth. I used organic sugar, so it took a little more to get the sugar dissolved than regular granulated sugar. When it’s smooth and no longer grainy, add it to the “whipped cream” mixture and beat until combine.

Divide filling evenly between 2 prepared graham cracker crusts, or your own crust in a 13×9 pan.

Topping:
1 can tart pitted cherries (including juice)
1 1/2 T cornstarch
1 T sugar

Spread on top of pie. Put in the fridge and chill, preferably 8 hours or overnight.

Variations:
2 cups frozen or fresh mixed or solo berries instead of cherries

If you use a chocolate graham cracker crust, you can spread a layer of chocolate pudding on the top instead of fruit for a chocolate delight. Top with whipped cream when serving.

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Categories: challenges, dessert, recipes, vegan, vegan mofo, vegan mofo 2013 | Tags: , , , , , | 6 Comments

Vegan Month of Food, Day 9: Cabbage Soup and Dumplings Casserole

So, I really, really, REALLY like Isa’s Chickpea Rice Soup with Cabbage. It’s one of my favourite soups. It’s warm, comforting, simple, and delicious.

I also really like the recipe for Savoury Seitan Pie that I did for last year’s MoFo.

So, this recipe is what happens when you combine the best of both Isa’s soup and my savoury pie. It’s like a potpie on steroids. So filling. So homey.

cabbagepie2

Spray a 13×9 pan and heat oven to 450.

In a soup pot, mix together:
1 c chopped red onion
3 cloves minced garlic
1/2 tsp dry thyme powder
1 tsp salt
1 c cooked rice
1 1/2 c sliced carrots
1/2 lb shredded cabbage (roughly)
3 c garbanzo beans, cooked or from a can
2 T fresh dill
1 1/4 c white sauce
1 T nutritional yeast

Leave on low heat, covered, to heat through while you prepare the biscuits.

This is the filling waiting for the biscuits to go on. Mmmm.

This is the filling waiting for the biscuits to go on. Mmmm.

Biscuit topping:
2/3 c vegan margarine
2 c whole wheat flour
1 1/2 c white flour
2 T baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dried dill
1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 c non-dairy milk, preferably unsweetened

Combine flours, baking powder, salt, and herbs. Cut in margarine until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Stir in milk just until soft dough forms. It will be sticky.

Pour warmed cabbage soup mixture into 13×9 pan, and then drop biscuit dough in blobs over the top, spreading to cover. It’s okay if it doesn’t completely cover the cabbage mixture.

Bake at 450 for 15-20 minutes.

Bonus picture of GooGoo raiding the bread bag while our lunch cools a bit on the table.

Bonus picture of GooGoo raiding the bread bag while our lunch cools a bit on the table.

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Categories: casseroles, challenges, entrees, recipes, vegan, vegan mofo, vegan mofo 2013, vegetables | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Vegan MoFo #11: Optionally Pink Peppermint Pie

TIME FOR A DESSERT.

This recipe was originally found on page 303 of the 1978 Betty Crocker cookbook.

The original recipe is primarily heavy cream, whipped – and melted marshmallows.

Blech, says I.

I made this pie in my pre-veg days with the cream and marshmallows and thought it was good, albeit the next day it was less appealing because I’ve never been a huge fan of the texture of marshmallows anyway, and it really made me a bit grossed out. It was for some relatives who were coming over to dinner. I served them haystacks, homemade GooGoo Clusters*, and this pie.

But creamy peppermint pie! Surely there must be some way to have it uncorrupted by horse hooves and calf food, and be sort of nutritious as well.

Pink Peppermint Pie

Pink Peppermint Pie, Take 1

So, about a month ago I decided to give it a try, because even I can only eat so many cream pies and I knew it would take some tweaking before I was ready to present it to you today.

I have a millet cheesecake recipe I like to use a lot. Not only is it healthy (millet! cashews! no refined sugar!), it’s super simple to put together and the only expensive part is the cashews – of which you don’t use that many anyway. (By the way, the linked recipe is enough for either one springform cheesecake or two pie pans like I have pictured here. I did half a recipe to get just one pie.)

So that was my springboard. I thought that I could just whip it up, add peppermint flavouring, sub a nutmilk for the lemon juice, tint it with some of the beet juice from the beet-filled Pyrex of my husband’s that was in the fridge, and call it good.

Sadly, that didn’t work out so well. I took it to our Friday night group and the vote was unanimous that it needed improvement. All three of the children present, independent of one another, said it tasted like toothpaste at their very first bite. Notwithstanding that, the oldest-constantly-hungry-teenager-whom-we-shall-call-Train-Boy ate two helpings of the Toothpaste Pie.

The texture was all wrong and the peppermint flavouring was definitely too strong.

I tried again the following Friday, and according to inside sources all the kids, including Train Boy, made Loud Groaning Noises of Sadness and Despair and said, “Is she bringing Toothpaste Pie aGAIN?” when their mom told them I was bringing take 2. We all agreed, however, when we tried it, that the flavour was pretty perfect this time, but the texture just still needed work.

So, behold: Take 3.

not-so-pink peppermint pie

I didn’t have any beet juice on hand, and my red food colouring is MIA. Please use your imaginations to imagine that the pie filling part is pink.

First, you’ll need a graham cracker crust. For takes 1 and 2, I used premade graham cracker crumb crusts, which are totally okay, very yummy, and certainly the easiest way. For take 3, I decided to go all out and I used the graham cracker recipe from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar and made a pressed-in cookie-type crust.

Second, you need to do your filling. Here’s how.

Soak:
1/2 c cashews for 8 hours or overnight

Cook together:
1/4 c millet
1 c water

I forgot to time it, but it doesn’t take very long, so keep a close eye on it. When it comes to a boil, turn it down to a simmer and when the water is mostly gone, turn it off and set aside, covered.

In another saucepan whisk together:
1 1/2 c non-dairy milk (I used oat milk in take 3, but soy, almond, or cocoanut would also work)
1 tsp agar powder
1 T cornstarch
1/4 c sugar

Whisk in pan constantly at medium heat until it gets bubbly; then continue to whisk about 2 minutes, until slightly thickened. Pour into blender with soaked cashews.

Add the following to the blender:
1 tsp peppermint extract
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
A few drops red food colouring, if desired

When that is blended super-smooth, pour in the millet and blend again until smooth. Spread into pan and refrigerate until firm. You can top with a non-dairy whipped topping if you like, or crushed peppermint candies, or both.

not-so-pink peppermint pie

Sliced and ready to nom

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*GOOGOO CLUSTERS**. Surely there must be a way to make these vegan, too.

**My eldest daughter’s prenatal name was GooGoo because of GooGoo Clusters. I was kind of obsessed with them. Also, I tried to freak people out by telling them we were planning to actually name the baby GooGoo Cluster.

Categories: challenges, dessert, holiday, recipes, soy-free, vegan, vegan mofo, vegan mofo 2012 | Tags: , , , , | 8 Comments

Cookbook Review: Vegan Pie in the Sky

This is the most recent installment in the dessert trilogy by Isa Chandra Moskowitz of Post Punk Kitchen and Terry Hope Romero. I have all three books, but I have to say that this one has been used the most by me. I guess that I like pie. Also, there are more recipes in this book that call for things I usually have on hand or easy access to. Plus, my husband is far more likely to eat things from this book; he’s not into cookies or cake much at all.

There is LOTS of information in the book about how to succeed at making pies, with lots of tips, answering questions about thickeners like agar and cornstarch, how to use frozen fruit successfully in a pie, what kind of equipment you need, and more.

You might be saying to yourself, “But isn’t pie always vegan?” Generally, yes (unless you’re using lard in your crusts). But this book encompasses other desserts too – fruit buckles, pandowdies, hand pies, crisps, cobblers, and tarts – things that didn’t fit into either the cupcake or cookie realm.

So, without further ado, I’ll share my thoughts about all the recipes I’ve tried so far.

Double Butter Crust: This was an EXCELLENT crust and I was pleased with both flavour and texture. It was a little challenging to make without a pastry cutter (mine is in storage, boo!) and I did a double batch, but I somehow managed with a fork to get it all worked together. I used this crust for the following two pies:

Blackberry Bramble Pie

Blackberry Bramble Pie

Because we have blackberries growing profusely on our property and they are Free, this was a natural first choice for me to make out of this book. We had loads in the freezer! I blithely ignored Isa’s cautions about adding extra cornstarch to frozen fruit, however, and later regretted not heeding her voice of experience, because it was runny. But that was my own fault. It still tasted fantastic. (I also left out the liqueur, because I didn’t have any, just for the record.)

Appleberry Pie

Appleberry Pie

I did this with our own apples and blackberries, and again it was amazingly good. Both this pie and the Blackberry Bramble Pie got rave reviews from our Friday night small group.

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Maple-Kissed Blueberry Pie (Blueberry Thrill Pie not pictured)

I did the double buttery crust with 1.5 cups white flour/1 cup spelt flour for these two blueberry variations. I could really NOT tell much difference between these two pies, most likely because I didn’t have maple extract and the maple syrup wasn’t enough on its own to give the maple flavour. I also couldn’t put in the lemon zest because my coffee grinder has given up the ghost and I was unable to grind up my frozen lemon peelings, which made me sad. Also, despite upping the cornstarch as recommended this time for frozen fruit, it was still a tad runny. HOWEVER, they were still a big hit. My friend made the cocoanut milk ice cream you see pictured below to eat with the pie:

Amazingness on a paper plate.

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Summer Fruit Buckle: I did this for my birthday cake this year, and it was so, so delicious! I didn’t get a picture of it, unfortunately. It was best eaten the day of baking: fluffy, light, and doughnut-like (I think the cardamom is what makes it so delectably perfect!); afterwards it got kind of gooey from the fruit. It still tasted okay but the texture was just not the same. So I recommend making only a single recipe at a time unless you’re planning to feed quite a crowd.

(What is a buckle, you might ask? It’s cake batter with fruit dumped, er, carefully arranged on top. The cake part rises up around the fruit and it all… buckles.)

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Berry Cobbler: I used about 1.5 cups of blueberries, 2 slices of strawberry from my freezer (don’t ask why there were 2 slices in a bag in my freezer) and the remainder of the berries were fresh blackberries we picked. The only thing I didn’t do was use the chocolate chips because, tragically, I had none.

It was a bit runny when we ate it right out of the oven at lunchtime, but it set up by suppertime. The biscuit topping is really tasty – my new favourite, I think.

Next time, I think I might either decrease the amount of fruit or do one-and-a-half times the topping. I like my cobblers more bready, but that’s a personal thing, I think (I always increase the amount of crisp topping when I make fruit crisp, too). I should also add that through the second day the bread was still very nice (some cobblers get pretty soggy quickly).

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Key Lime Pie

Key Lime Pie

I cheated and used a premade graham cracker crust when I did the Key Lime Pie (and just plain limes). It was amazingly good. I could have eaten it all the first day if my husband didn’t stop me! My daughter, who is two, also loved it. It stayed nice for about two days; after that the crust started to get a little soggy. And then I had to hurry and finish eating it before it got any worse.

Grasshopper Pie: I haven’t made this one myself but my friend did, and it was delicious!

If you’d like to try a couple recipes out of this book, Isa has shared a few on her site. Or buy yourself a copy for Kindle or in paperback.

Categories: Cookbook Review, dessert, vegan | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

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