Okay, first thing's first. There's no red in these pies. But that could easily be remedied with red food coloring (I hear beet juice works well if you want to go natural) or diced strawberries sprinkled over the top with the lemon zest. I actually tried to make the coconut cream red by using cherries, but the deep color just faded back to white as soon as I stirred it in. But red or no red, these are still a wonderful treat for the Fourth of July (or any day).
Tomorrow is my birthday, which means I'll be posting the roundup of my gluten-free cake challenge. You can still send me links today if you made a cake and would like to add it! And if you linked up to the challenge, don't forget to send me the link and photo you would like me to use. I'll also be posting the winner of Ricki Heller's breakfast e-cookbook, so you can still enter today!
As for me? Life is changing quickly, and it's all good, but as I'm sure you know, change - even good change - can be scary. For someone like me, who wants to feel completely in control, letting go of the reins and letting life happen is no easy task. Not surprisingly, this is when my old habits tend to take over. Old habits like overeating and focusing too much on food. Somehow, I find there's comfort in obsessing over food and weight. It's not fun, but it's a trick I know only too well, and it does the job, which is to dull my senses enough to not feel the fear of doing something new. Of course, this topic deserves more than a passing paragraph, and I'm sure there will be a doozy of a post on it soon. But in the meantime, I'll leave you with some food for thought (pun intended) from Women Food and God, which I'm currently reading:
"Compulsive eating is basically a refusal to be fully alive. No matter what we weigh, those of us who are compulsive eaters have anorexia of the soul. We refuse to take in what sustains us. We live lives of deprivation. And when we can't stand it any longer, we binge. The way we are able to accomplish all of this is by the simple act of bolting - of leaving ourselves - hundreds of times a day." - Geneen Roth
Not to leave you all on a troubled note, I'll also tell you my favorite quote, something my yoga teacher said during class once. This always gives me a sense of peace and the belief that everything has a purpose:
"Imagine that everything is exactly as it should be. That everything is perfect, right here, right now." - Keely Garfield
Mini Red, White and Blueberry Pies
Adapted from Shirley Braden of Gluten Free Easily
These individual blueberry pies are a light and refreshing ending to any meal. Sweetened with stevia and offset with the lightest hint of tart lemon, you’ll leave the table feeling satisfied without being weighed down.
1 1/4 cup blanched almond flour (130 grams)
1 tablespoon Earth Balance (substitutions: butter, coconut oil, shortening, grapeseed oil or extra light olive oil - use 1/2 teaspoon less if using grapeseed or olive oil)
3 teaspoons tapioca starch
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon coconut oil
2 cups blueberries
1 teaspoon lemon juice
pinch salt (less than 1/8 teaspoon)
10 drops liquid stevia
1 13.5 ounce (398ml) can full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight
5 drops vanilla or plain liquid stevia
zest of half a lemon
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 4 mini pie or tart pans (approx 4.5 inches). Set aside.
- In a small bowl, cream together the almond flour and Earth Balance with a fork. Once it is mixed well, separate the mixture into 4 balls. With your fingertips, press each ball into the pie pans evenly, forming a crust. Bake for 7-10 minutes (will depend on the size of your mini pan), checking after 5 minutes. The crust should be just beginning to brown.
- While the crust is baking, whisk the tapioca starch and water together in a small bowl. Set aside for a moment.
- In a medium sized pan on the stove, stir together the 1 teaspoon coconut oil, blueberries, lemon juice and salt. Turn the heat to medium and stir occasionally, allowing the mixture to come to a light simmer. Whisk the tapioca and water again, and add to the mix. Add stevia. Continue stirring until the blueberries begin to break down, about 5 minutes.
- Pour blueberry mixture into baked pie crusts. The mixture will thicken as it cools. Place in refrigerator for an hour.
- When the pies are about ready to come out of the refrigerator, take your can of coconut milk out of the refrigerator. The water and cream will have separated, and the cream will be on top. Scoop the thick cream out with a spoon into a mixing bowl. Add the stevia and beat about 2 minutes until it resembles whipped cream.
- Take the pies out of the refrigerator. Scoop a spoonful of whipped coconut cream onto each pie and smooth with the back of a spoon. Sprinkle each pie with lemon zest.
- Serve immediately or return to refrigerator until ready to eat.
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