Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Assembling the perfect pumpkin pie

gluten free pumpkin pieMy family doesn't have too many traditions for Thanksgiving, but the one thing that has stayed true is our insatiable appetite for pumpkin pie. We had a tryout this weekend for our annual tradition, as an interesting gluten-free pumpkin pie recipe emerged.

In the November issue of Natural Health magazine, a recipe for a Coconut-Crusted Sweet Potato Pie caught my attention. What really surprised me was this recipe called for no flour, just coconut and butter. I've always been a fan of flourless chocolate cake, so why not flourless pumpkin pie? I decided I had to try this out, albeit swapping the sweet potatoes with pumpkin.

I tasked my loyal sous chef, Swati, with making the pie. (Actually we fought over this, but in the end she won out.) Most years, I would just use the canned pumpkin puree, but this time Swati opted for fresh pumpkin, using the one we received as part of our CSA share.

She did a great job in making the pie. The filling was especially noteworthy, holding together nicely. Unfortunately, the flourless dream was unrealized - the crust was a little disappointing. It fell apart easily, and called for a little too much coconut. I longed for the crust we made last year, made from walnuts, hazelnut flour and maple syrup. It was a recipe that I discovered in San Francisco from Darshana Weill of Fruition Health. The nutty taste contrasted nicely with the smooth taste of the pumpkin.

So next week, I think I will marry the perfect filling with the perfect crust to create the ultimate pumpkin pie. Here is what I plan to do. If anyone would like to test out this recipe for me, I would love to hear how it comes out!

Perfect Filling:
2 cups pumpkin puree (canned or fresh)
2 eggs
½ cup tofu, firm
2/3 cup maple syrup
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground cardamom

Perfect Crust:
1 cup ground pecans
1 cup ground rolled oats
1 cup rice or hazelnut flour
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup canola or other vegetable oil

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Grind pecans and rolled oats in a blender. Mix in rice flour, maple syrup and vegetable oil. Press into pie pan.

In a food processor or blender, combine mashed pumpkin, eggs, tofu, maple syrup, and spices. Puree until smooth. Pour filling into the crust and bake for 30 minutes, or until the filling has firmed up. Check to see if ready by inserting toothpick into center. If it does not come out clean, continue baking for another 10-15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.

Attention Gluten-Free Bakers: Look for GF Rolled Oats sold by Bob's Red Mill.


vivek said...

that sounds reaaallly good! pumpkin pie is my favorite along with key lime pie. the pumpkin pies at whole foods are expensive, but everything there is. i'll be interested to hear how the ultimate pumpkin pie turns out!

Anonymous said...

technically, the later recipe with the nice sounding crust shouldn't be labeled as "gluten-free" because the rolled oats are usually cross contaminated with gluten containing flours.

Ameet said...

Thanks for pointing that out! It is possible to buy GF rolled oats from Bob's Red Mill these days, but yes you are right. I personally seem to do okay with rolled oats, but for those with Celiacs Disease, should be more careful.

Sharon said...

This looks great! I've been looking for a good-looking gluten free pie recipe!!

Joseph Dier said...

That pumpkin pie looks amazing, what do you think would be a good replacement for the tofu? (I'm allergic to soy)

Ameet said...

Hi Joe, I made a tofu-less version of this pie last year. You can use 1/2 cup rice or almond milk and 4 tbsp of arrowroot instead. I didn't use an egg in this alternate version. Just note, it will come out a little more pudding-like (not as firm).

Integrative Nutrition