Thursday, May 9, 2013
Dairy-Free Tofu Pumpkin Pie, Vegan Gingerbread, and Scrambled Tofu
Many, many years ago (shhh... almost twenty!), I attended a vegetarian Thanksgiving potluck supper where someone brought one of the most delicious pumpkin pies I’ve ever tasted (before or since). Not an egg in sight in this creamy smooth pie, but everything else you’d expect to replicate this holiday favorite.
The great thing about tofu is that although its pretty tasteless on its own, tofu takes on the taste of whatever you mix it with. You can also match the texture of your dish by using the right tofu. In this case, since I wanted an exceptionally smooth and soft filling, I selected a firm silken tofu from Mori Nu. Unlike other tofus, silken does not require refrigeration before opening.
So... pumpkin pie made with tofu in place of eggs is silky smooth and tastes like pumpkin seasoned with ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.
Oh, and another notable difference is the use of a store-bought graham cracker crust which, if made with margarine, is considered vegan.
DAIRY-FREE TOFU PUMPKIN PIE is best baked, cooled and chilled the day before it is to be used.
Mix in a food processor or blender until smooth:
16 oz. firm silken tofu*
16 oz. pumpkin
1 tsp. each ginger/cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. each ground nutmeg/cloves
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
Pour into graham cracker crust (store-bought crusts are made with margarine**). If you make it at home and want dairy-free, don’t use butter.
Bake one hour at 350 degrees Fahrenheit; will set more as it cools
* Mori Nu firm silken tofu usually comes in a 12.3 oz. container, so you’ll need to buy two and measure (weigh) to get the correct amount. The canned pumpkin that I used was Libby’s Pumpkin Filling - 15 oz. My advice would be to use the 15 oz. and only add 15 ounces of tofu, but add the other ingredients in the amounts listed.
** Since this recipe is almost twenty years old, I don’t know if this fact still holds true.
I’ve made this pie many times. This time I used a reduced fat crust and reduced fat whipped topping. I’ve made a note for future reference to stick to full fat next time I make DAIRY-FREE TOFU PUMPKIN PIE. For those who are vegan or simply eating dairy-free, remember that whipped toppings contain milk. Instead try one made with coconut milk, such as this one at Kitchen Simplicity.
What to do with leftover silken tofu...
After you make the pie, there will be leftover tofu! I put on my thinking cap and came up with the idea of using a gingerbread mix which, for some reason or other, I bought on sale one day. It called for the addition of one egg and some water.
I decided to substitute 1/4 cup of the silken tofu for the egg and the gingerbread cooked beautifully and tasted very good. Again, I had the whipped topping to serve with it.
Still had leftover tofu...
For scrambled tofu (instead of scrambled eggs), I mixed about 1/4 cup of the tofu with sautéed chopped scallions and tomatoes, then cooked it some more. Added salt and pepper, and then topped with shredded cheese. If I’d had some nutritional yeast, I would have mixed in a couple of teaspoons worth for added color and a more buttery taste.
And that was the end of the tofu.