The title should read "Gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar free, banana cream pie", but that just seemed a little over the top long.
It was a good Christmas, with a nice brunch at my mom's -- where she made some delicious gluten free goodies for Mark. We skipped dinner here, but did have a great banana cream pie.
All right. I'll be honest - we didn't actually skip skip dinner. We ate bacon. And then banana cream pie. In a roundabout sort of way, we got at least a few food groups in.
The banana cream pie was a trial run for a lunch on Monday, as one of my friends is wheat intolerant as well. So between the three of us we have two people who can't have wheat (one with no gluten either), and one dairy free person. This pie has a custard made from light coconut milk, corn starch as thickener, maple syrup as sweetener, and meringue for the topping.
The crumb base is made from a crumbled cake I made using a recipe from the book "Babycakes: Vegan, mostly gluten free, mostly sugar free recipes from New York's most talked about bakery". I really, really wanted to like this cookbook, but have not had much luck with the recipes.
The recipe is after the jump, along with a mini-review of the book.
There was a suggestion in the book to use the cupcakes as a crumb base, and that's what I did. I used about 4 to 6 cupcakes for this recipe and mixed up the crumbs as I would a graham cracker crumb crust. This recipe is dairy free, but if you can tolerate some dairy please feel free to use real butter instead of the butter substitute.
The bad part of this recipe is that you need some leftover gluten free cake. Or you have to be willing to cook up a cake and then crumble it (I vote for leftovers!). If you have a dried out or overcooked chocolate cake, it's perfect! Don't throw it out, just freeze it until you're ready to whip this up.
Gluten free, dairy free Banana Cream Pie (one small pie, double for a regular sized pie)
Custard (recipe below)
1 8x8 leftover chocolate cake, or 6 cupcakes, to make crumb base
Crumb base (recipe below)
For the Custard:
One 400ml can of Light Coconut Milk (I used Thai Kitchen, 3.5% fat)
2.5 Tbsp of cornstarch
1/2 cup palm sugar or cane sugar (regular sugar if that's all you have)
1/4 tsp salt
2 egg yolks (reserve the whites for the meringue)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp butter substitute (like Earth Balance), or real butter
In a medium saucepan, stir together the sweetener, cornstarch, salt, and coconut milk. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture begins to thicken (this takes about 5 minutes). Cook for 2 minutes once the mixture has started the thickening process, then remove from heat (briefly). In a separate small dish beat the egg yolks; while whisking constantly, pour in about 3 tablespoons of the hot coconut milk mixture into the eggs. This is called tempering. Whisk together for about a minute, then pour the egg mixture into the rest of the coconut milk mixture, whisking constantly. Put the pan back onto the heat, and cook for about 2 more minutes. Remove from heat. Add in the vanilla and the tsp. of butter substitute, stir it all together, and set it aside.
For the crust:
I can't share the recipe here, because it wan't mine. However -- check your local library for a copy of the book, or use any gluten free chocolate cake recipe you like. This one from Food.com is pretty good and simple as well, or use any GF chocolate cake mix.
Cook the cake as normal, let it cool, and then crumble it up. Or pull it out of your freezer and crumble it up.
Crumbled cake -- about 1.5 to 2 cups of cake crumbs (3 cups for a regular pie, put these are NOT packed. They are lightly tossed and so have a lot of volume)
1 Tbsp butter substitute, or real butter, melted
1 Tbsp maple syrup
Stir all together, and press into a small (6") pie plate. Bake in a 350^ oven for about 10 to 12 minutes, until set. It won't be dry like a graham cracker crust, but that's okay.
Putting it all together:
Thinly slice the bananas. Lay the slices of one onto the crumb base. Pour the custard on top of the bananas (I found I had a little custard left). Layer the other banana on top of the custard. Make the meringue by whipping the two egg whites on high until peaks start to form, add in the maple syrup, and whip until stiff peaks have formed.
Spread the egg whites on top of the pie, sealing to the edges. Bake in a 375^ oven for 12 to 15 minutes, until nicely browned.
This should probably cool before eating, and be stored in the fridge, but we ate it warm. Enjoy.