You may have picked up by now that I have a thing for chocolate...I can't help it! Every time I see a new recipe that can be converted to gluten and dairy free, and that I can use some of my always-plentiful stash of 70% dark chocolate in, I just have to try it. I was given a new recipe book for Christmas:- “Fast and Flavorful Meatless Meals” by Jessie Price, and have been slowly trying new recipes. This weekend it was time for the Chocolate Raspberry Pie! And hey, it's nearly Easter, so chocolate is very appropriate!
Now, you're bound to scroll down to the ingredients list before long, so I'll get this bit out of the way straight-up: the filling is based on tofu. Yep, tofu. I'm not an avid tofu eater..... I don't regularly cook with it as it kind of scares me, as unfamiliar things tend to. But I'm always happy to try something at least once! I had the recipe book open and was just starting to get ingredients together when my tofu-sceptic husband came by and glanced at the recipe. “Tofu????” he exclaimed! “Just give it a go” I replied, and we left it at that. Once I'd wizzed it all up in the food processor he came by again, as he often does, just to 'check' how it's going (ie to see what there is to sample), and he had a lick of the mixture. Obviously surprised, he went back for more. My not-very-sweet-toothed husband has now had three helpings of the 'tofu pie' over the last two days, so I think I can safely say it was a success. It's also been a huge hit with my 7 year old who is a self-professed mousse-hater. Not bad, really!
The pie filling is a gorgeous stand-alone mousse and actually doesn't have to be served in a pie shell at all. We ate a heap of it fresh after being wizzed up, and it's just lovely. It solidifies in the fridge after a couple of hours and becomes too solid to really call a mousse, but if you wanted to make it ahead of time and serve it as a mousse, just take it out of the fridge for an hour or two before serving.
And, just to demonstrate that I don't always get my baking quite right, my attempt at making a large pie shell to put the filling in kind of failed. I made the the dough a little too moist, and rolled it out too thinly, and it ended up cracking to bits when I blind-baked it. Thankfully I also made some small tart shells that worked, so it wasn't a complete disaster. And remembering the old saying “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade”...I found that the crumbling pie crust made a fantastic and fancy-looking 'soil' to crumble over the top of the mousse, and gave it a lovely crunchy texture-element. Hubby even said it looked like I planned it all along!
- 300 grams fair trade dark (70% or more) chocolate (or about 1 1/2 cups dark choc chips if you prefer)
- 300 gram package of organic firm silken tofu (orginal recipe states 1 1/3 cups)
- 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup (or agave if you don't have maple. Raw honey would probably work too)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
- 1 cup frozen raspberries, thawed
- 1 quantity of Shortcrust Pastry, or other pie shell
- If making a pie, preheat oven to 200 degrees celsius.
- Roll the pastry to the size of your pie dish on a silicon baking mat or on baking paper. Grease your pie dish. Invert the paper over the dish and lightly press the pastry into the dish. Make sure pastry comes right up over the edge of the dish, as it will shrink a little when baking. Blind-bake using baking weights for 20-25 minutes, checking to make sure it's not over-browning. It must be fully cooked, as the filling will not be baked in the shell.
While the shell is cooling, make the filling:
- Melt the chocolate in a double boiler (place a glass or ceramic bowl over a saucepan with a little water in the bottom ; bring the water to the boil, then turn down to low temperature ; the steam from the water heats the bowl and melts the chocolate). Stir the chocolate as it melts, until it is completely smooth.
- In a food processor, blend together the tofu, maple syrup, and vanilla. Add the raspberries and process. Scrape down sides and process again until completely smooth.
- Add the melted chocolate and process again, scraping down sides until fully incorporated.
- If serving as a mousse, spoon into individual glasses or small mugs and serve at room temperature. Top with crumbled cooked pastry 'soil' if desired. Garnish with raspberries.
- If making a pie, spoon the mousse into the cooled pie shell and refridgerate at least 2 hours, until firm. Garnish with raspberries.
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