It's November and once again I'm blogging as many Thanksgiving-themed recipes I can squeeze into a month. Last week I got started with cranberry sauce. What's left but dessert?
Okay, being real, I've got lots more between cranberries and dessert, but isn't dessert one of those things that require a lot of planning? If not that, isn't it at least your favorite dish to anticipate for as long as possible? Whatever the case, my second Thanksgiving related post of the month is dessert, and a damn good one at that.
I've wanted to make a vegan pecan pie for a while now. For some reason I thought it'd be easy. Pecans are already vegan, vegan pie crust is easy enough to make/find...so, it couldn't be that tough, right? Then I read this. Apparently creating a vegan pecan pie isn't as easy as I thought. I guess I'd forgotten the one nearly essential non vegan-component to pecan pie: eggs.
You can't really blame me - it's not like they call it "egg pecan pie," which would be helpful, if you ask me.
So, I did the smart thing and copped PPK's logic. I used tofu.
You'd never know there was tofu in here. In fact, I fed this to a friend and grilled her as to what the secret ingredient might be. "Bananas? Coconut? What is it?!" (Okay, it does contain coconut milk, but that's not that weird. The pie doesn't taste like banana or coconut - I think she was just at a loss as to what unusual ingredient it could possibly contain.)
Since extra firm silken tofu can be hard to come by, I tried using regular old extra firm tofu. It worked. Once you run that stuff through the food processor it becomes completely smooth.
The other thing about this pie: it's a pecan pie of the chocolate variety. I've seen a few chocolate pecan pies floating around Pinterest, but not a single vegan one. I love chocolate in just about anything, so I figured I couldn't go wrong with it in a pecan pie, and I didn't. There are very few things that I can imagine would be less tasty with the addition of chocolate. Vegan pecan pie filling, it seems, tastes something like cinnamoney pecan-studded fudge. That's what I thought anyway. Not to far from the chocolate fudge I got at the Jersey shore as a kid. In other words, very rich, which means you need not concern yourself with creating a vegan whipped cream topping.
Vegan Chocolate Pecan Pie
- 1 vegan pie crust of choice
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup coconut oil
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- ½ lb. extra firm tofu drained
- ¼ cup coconut milk
- ¼ cup cocoa powder
- 2 tbsp. cornstarch
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 2 cups pecan halves
Stir brown sugar and maple syrup together in medium saucepan. Place over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Lower heat and allow to gently simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until thick and syrupy. Remove from heat and stir in coconut oil and vanilla.
Preheat oven to 350°.
Place tofu, coconut milk, cocoa powder, cornstarch, cinnamon and salt in food processor bowl. Blend until completely smooth, stopping to scrape down sides of bowl as needed.
Stir tofu mixture into brown sugar mixture until completely blended. Fold in pecans.
Pour mixture into pie crust. Bake 40 minutes.
Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before cutting.
Adapted from Post Punk Kitchen's Maple Pecan Pie.