T-Minus 3: Pumpkin Pie Made With What?
I tend to knit an eyebrow whenever I hear someone talk about "enlightened" recipes, particularly with sweets. I love a little fat and sugar at the end of a meal, so don't bother if all you got is some kind of reduced-fat cake-like thing that tastes like a chemical compromise. Give me an apple instead.
You can imagine my surprise, no, my astonishment, when I took my first bite of a pumpkin pie made with tofu. That old Thanksgiving classic -- the one with the luscious custardy filling that everyone loves to eat for breakfast the next day -- has undergone fat reduction, and this time, the operation was a huge success.
That's right, chuck the eggs and the dairy, and you'll still have a velvety smooth pumpkiny filling that tastes so much like the original you'll fool the guests. It's a culinary doppelganger if I ever saw one.
But do yourself a favor: Don't tell anyone. That kind of bulletin will be a shocker to meat-eating scaredy cats, causing them to run, hide and hightail it to the 7-11 for one of those low-fat dessert items in a box.
Without the dairy or eggs, this pumpkin pie is suitable for vegans as well as the Kosher kids coming to your house.
I took bits and pieces of various recipes I found online, and the details below are what I came up with.
The pie shell is up to you. I had no time to make dough, so I surrendered and bought pre-fab shells from Whole Foods, made with whole wheat flour and soybean oil, which tasted not half-bad. In a pinch, they work extremely well, particularly for one-crust pies.
Tofu Pumpkin Pie
1 16-ounce package of silken tofu, drained
1 15-ounce can unsweetened pumpkin puree
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Blend tofu and pumpkin in a food processor until combined, looking orange. Add sugar and vanilla and blend until well combined. With a rubber spatula, scoop mixture out of food processor bowl and into a medium mixing bowl. Add remaining ingredients and stir by hand until they are well integrated. Pour into 9-inch pie shell. Place pie shell on a baking tray, which goes into the oven.
Bake at 425 for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 325 degrees. Bake for about 45 minutes, until filling is nearly set. You may also notice slight cracks, which is a good indication that filling is set.
Remove from oven and cool about 1 hour. Cover with foil and place in refrigerator until cold, at least one hour. Best served cold.
Other assorted tidbits:
I may be sharp in the kitchen, but I am all thumbs when it comes to setting the table. Home section gals Annie Groer and Jura Koncius are online today at 1 ET for dorks like me, for a Holiday Decorating special.
Tonight's homework assignment:
Make cranberry sauce. It is one of the easiest things on the menu, so easy, in fact, there's no excuse for resorting to the can. You can practically make the sauce while you're catching up on "Seinfeld" reruns.
Here's how: Throw a bag of cranberries into a pot. Add an eight-ounce bottle of maple syrup - not Aunt Jemima but something closer to Vermont style. Squeeze the juice of three oranges right into the pot. If you don't have fresh oranges, add about ¾ cup orange juice. Bring up to a boil, then lower heat and cook on a simmer. Berries will pop and break down. Cook until desired texture. This takes no more than 30 minutes. Cool, then store in fridge in an air-tight container until Thursday.
By kimodo |
November 21, 2005; 10:33 AM ET
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