Monday, September 13, 2010

Recipe: Vegan Peanut Butter and Chocolate Pie

Editor's Note: December 2013 - I originally wrote this post in my early days of food blogging, long before I even considered becoming a vegan. My vegan baking skills (and blogging skills) have improved since then, so I've updated this recipe a smidge to make it even better than it was before. Enjoy!

If there's one thing in life that I think a person should not have to do without it's dessert.   A little chocolate, or ice cream, or pie every once in awhile - or in my case daily - really can't hurt you as long as you enjoy your decadence in moderation.  (although I'm no expert on moderation...I think I could easily eat an entire tray of brownies...but I'll talk about that some other time)

One of my favorite cooking/baking games is "feed your friends and family vegan food without telling them."  Admittedly, I'm not a vegan, and I'd be a hypocrite to say that I'm even close to being completely vegan (darn you, dairy ice cream!), but I understand the benefits of limiting daily dairy intake, from a calorie perspective as well as from a "holy cow, what kind of awful stuff is put into dairy these days" perspective.

But I digress.

For a recent holiday, I was given the task of creating a dessert to share with my completely non-vegan extended family.  My vegetarian mother has been secretly feeding them vegetarian food for years, but vegan food is a whole 'nother ballgame.

I decided to try my hand at making a vegan peanut butter chocolate pie.  I mean, who doesn't like peanut butter and/or chocolate?  And the recipe went something like this:

  • 1 container extra firm tofu (not the "lite" kind - very important - it will taste like tofu if you use the wrong kind)
  • At least 1 1/4 cups of melted vegan chocolate chips
  • 1/2 to 2/3 cups peanut butter
  • Soy/almond/etc. milk to desired texture - at least 1/2 cup
  • Vegan pie crust (something like a graham cracker crust works nicely) 
Get your blender ready!  The key to creating a delicious, non-tofu-y pie is blending.  

  1. Combine the chocolate chips, peanut butter, and soy milk and heat until all ingredients are melted/more malleable. 
  2. Put the tofu and melted chocolate mixture in the blender.  
  3. Blend until smooth - note that you might need to add extra non-dairy milk to make the pie filling easier to work with. Use your best judgement.

And now you're done!  Not really, but sort of.  At this point, you'll need to taste the pie and see what needs to be added.  Perhaps more chocolate?  Or more milk, if the texture is too thick...or more peanut butter, if you feel like you're tasting chocolate and tofu and not chocolate peanut butter goodness.  Once you think you have the flavors "right," put the filling in the pie crust and set in the refrigerator to chill for at least an hour.  If you're like me and hate plain looking dessert, feel free to use a little more melted chocolate to decorate the top of the pie before chilling.

The finished product:

(Might I mention that this recipe is lifted from the kind folks at VegWeb.  For the original recipe and some helpful user commentary, click here.)

And the result?  A delicious, non-vegan tasting pie that my family gobbled up.  Or at least enjoyed.  My dessert was in direct competition with an ice cream cake, but if I do say so myself, my dessert was much better!

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