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Friday, February 28, 2014

Vegan Coconut Cream Pie with Amaretto Whipped Cream

Dylan's new thing is coconut cream pie.  Red velvet cake used to be his go to for birthdays and special occasions, but after enjoying a particularly heavenly slice of coconut cream pie last time we were in Tennessee, he's been a changed man.  When he asked me to make him one for Valentines Day,  I asked myself, Can I make This Vegan??  Without much hesitation, I thought..... Shit Yeah I Can!  And I did, and it was delicious!!  Dylan ate the whole thing...not in one night of course, and he's already asking for another.  That's what I call a success!

To make the crust:
1 box graham crackers, about 18 crackers (look for a good organic option.  mine were gluten free and vegan)
1/3 c raw almonds
1/4 c coconut oil
3 Tbsp. non dairy milk (coconut, almond, or rice)
pinch salt

the filling:
2 cans of full fat coconut milk
1 1/4 c shredded unsweetened coconut
1/4 c coconut sugar (you could substitute another kind of sugar or agave)
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
1/4 Tsp. salt
1/2 Tsp. vanilla

amaretto whipped cream:
1 can of full fat coconut milk chilled for at least a few hours, overnight is ideal
1 Tbsp. maple syrup (or agave)
1/2 Tsp. almond extract
pinch salt

To make the crust,  pulse the almonds in a food processor until you make almond meal (like course sand) and add to a mixing bowl.  Next, pulse the graham crackers to a sand-like consistency and add to the bowl as well.

Pour in melted coconut oil and non-dairy milk, add salt, and mix it up with your hands.

Press the mixture evenly into a pie shell and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove and let cool.

For the filling, begin by lightly toasting the coconut on a baking sheet at 250 degrees for about 15 minutes.  Stir it around a few times so it toasts evenly.

 In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add both cans of coconut milk, only the thick white cream that has risen to the top, discard the water left on the bottom.  Whisk in the cornstarch, coconut sugar, vanilla, and salt.  Add the toasted coconut and stir the mixture over low heat until it becomes nice and thick.

Pour the coconut mixture over the crust (you may have a little left over) and place the pie in the fridge for at least three hours.  Longer is better, but if you are an impatient heathen like me, three hours will suffice.

Before serving, make the amaretto whipped cream by whipping the chilled coconut milk (only the white cream at the top of the can), almond extract, maple syrup, and salt with an electric mixer until it creates stiff peaks.  You can spread the cream on top of your chilled pie or dollop a heap on top of each slice.

Isn't she pretty?  No one will ever know she's vegan ;)

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