Though we usually don’t do a whole lot for Valentine’s Day, this year we are counting down our “free” pre-baby weekends and made dinner plans for Saturday night. We ended up going to Detroit’s Vicente’s Cuban Cuisine, which a former co-worker told me about years ago (back when I had co-workers right after moved to Michigan). I knew they had vegan paella for us but, as is the norm with most restaurants, there are no vegan desserts.
I considered stopping by our local go-to for raw, vegan desserts, which I pick up from time to time since I’m to lazy to make it at home. I decided for Valentine’s Day perhaps I should step up my game a little. My squeeze loves coconutty things, so I googled “vegan coconut cream pie” and lots of recipes came up, some more intricate than others. Since I didn’t have a ton of time (or the foresight to have special ordered ingredients like agar agar), I decided to tryout a recipe that only had a handful of ingredients and was really fast.
By the time I got done socializing at the grocery store, I was really crunched for time. Fortunately, there was a vegan graham cracker crust ready to purchase so I took the way easy route with that. Not that it’s hard to make one, but I don’t plan on using graham crackers again anytime soon so I figured why not. All you need are the crackers or crumbs, butter and sugar. You can find a really simple recipe you can use to make one from scratch HERE. If you’re doing the gluten-free thing, buy some kind of gluten-free cookie and use those (I’ve used g-f gingersnaps before for crusts — yum). The pie itself is gluten-free.
I put the pie into the refrigerator a big before we left for the restaurant and it was perfectly set by the time we got home. I intended to make coconut whipped cream, but it said to refrigerate the coconut milk for overnight and again, there wasn’t enough time. I put it in the refrigerator with the intention of making it for further helpings today, but it was plenty delicious on its own so i didn’t bother. I definitely want to try some another time, though, and I think I go with THIS recipe from one of my favorite vegan blogs, Oh She Glows.
OK, onto the pie. I grabbed the recipe from the site She Knows. Mine didn’t turn out yellow like theirs. Not sure what’s up with that. Tasted great though! And my husband thought so too, which I guess was the point. I think it’s about time for me to have another helping. Enjoy!
• 1 c. coconut flakes (I did a little extra)
• 3 c. coconut milk (this was roughly 2 cans) or 2 c. coconut milk and 1 c. soy or almond milk for less richness.
• 1/2 c. silken tofu
• 2/3 c. sugar
• 1/2 c. cornstarch
• 1/4 tsp. salt
• 1 tsp. vanilla extract
• 1 9-inch crust (pre baked if you make it yourself)
• 1 c. of vegan whipped topping, optional 🙂
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spread coconut flakes on a cookie sheet and bake for 5 minutes to toast, then set aside.
2. In a medium saucepan over low heat, combine coconut milk, tofu, sugar, cornstarch and salt. Cook stirring constantly until it comes to a boil. (I found a whisk works best. And I turned the heat up a little or I was going to be waiting all day for it to come to a boil at low heat I think…).
3. Remove mixture from heat. Add 3/4 c. of the toasted coconut and vanilla. Stir well, then pour into crust.
4. Sprinkle with half of remaining toasted coconut, place in refrigerator and let chill for 3 hours or until firm.
5. If using, top with whipped cream and more toasted coconut and dig in!