Sunday, December 16, 2012

Gluten- and Dairy-Free Pumpkin Pie

Probably my favorite pie, but let's be real here, pumpkin-anything is pretty great.

One of the things you miss out on when you can't have dairy is the great majority of desserts. Remove gluten and it's exponentially harder to find desserts (and anything) you can have in restaurants and other food establishments. So, it's great to be able to have a dessert that's not sorbet or fresh fruit--especially a holiday mainstay like pumpkin pie. But, you do still have to make the crust yourself.

On the plus side, this gluten-free pie crust recipe over at King Arthur Flour is really excellent--crumbly and short. A simple substitution of Earth Balance for the butter makes it dairy-free, as well.

As for the filling, pumpkin pie is an example of silken tofu's being a godsend for dairy allergy sufferers. It subs in perfectly in the pie filling. It's also a yogurt and sour cream alternative (with other ingredients). Just make sure to press the tofu beforehand to get rid of all the excess fluid (you should always press tofu before cooking with it).

Before baking

Crust shielded to prevent burning. I just improvised it but there are better ways to make a foil crust shield.

The pie really came out great. Make sure to start the baking hot (425F) before turning down the temperature later, to prevent the crust from turning out soggy. The only thing is that I wish I'd rolled the crust out a little thinner so that I would have had enough crust at the top to fold or crimp.

Gluten- and Dairy-Free Pumpkin Pie

King Arthur Flour has an excellent gluten-free pie crust recipe: Just substitute out the butter for Earth Balance (or other vegan butter). As for the flour, you could make your own mix or use a pre-made mix, such as from King Arthur. I use a mix from Denise Jardin’s book, The Dairy-Free and Gluten-Free Kitchen, with rice flour, potato flour (not starch), sorghum flour, and tapioca starch (also called flour).

9” pie tin
oil or cooking spray for greasing pie tin

1 can (16 oz.) pumpkin purée
12 oz. silken tofu, pressed and food-processed or blended until smooth
10 TBS brown sugar
2 TBS maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinammon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg

1.    Make crust according to recipe linked above.
2.    Pre-heat oven to 425F.
3.    Combine all filling ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth.
4.    Pour filling onto the crust in the pie tin and spread out to fill the tin, smoothing out the top for a flat surface. Shield the crust with aluminum foil so it doesn’t burn while baking.
5.    Bake at 425F on the bottom rack of the oven for 20 minutes. Then turn oven down to 350F, put pie on middle rack, and bake until done, about another 40 minutes. Look for the filling surface and crust to have browned and set. Remove from oven and cool on a cooling rack before refrigerating to chill.

[edit: slight tweaks to the recipe; I'd originally typed up the recipe from what I could remember, until I found my sheet of notes.]


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