Tuesday, September 19, 2006

This is tofu? (Chocolate Pie)

This recipe was created by Jennifer McLain and was printed as a “Recipe Redux” (makeover feature) in Vegetarian Times, January 1994. I’ve found it in a couple of places online without any credit given.

Jennifer explained her need to create something wonderful (and somewhat healthier or at least lower in fat than other chocolate pie recipes) for a family special occasion: “it would have to have the taste and appearance of one that was spectacularly unhealthful.”

Well, it does! We’ve made it twice, once for Christmas when a vegan relative was coming, and once this year for dinner with friends. It’s very chocolaty (think mousse?) and very rich, and it really does serve 12 (because you won’t want a big piece. Well, maybe you will.).

This is the recipe as published, with my notes in brackets. (It took me longer to track down the right tofu and preserves than it did to make the pie.)

Chocolate Pie After Redux

(It can be made up to three days in advance.)


*7 oz. chocolate wafer cookies or graham crackers
*2 tbsp. canola oil or melted margarine.
(My note: I just make a graham cracker crust following the directions in the Betty Crocker Cookbook. You can use any crumb crust recipe you like.)

* 8 oz. unsweetened chocolate (a box of the supermarket kind is fine)

* 2 10-oz. packages silken tofu
(The first time I made this, I bought a 19-oz. box of aseptically-packaged silken tofu, because Jennifer insisted that the tofu be the silken type. The second time, I had to use what the supermarket offered, which was soft (but not silken) tofu in 300 g (about 10 ½ oz.) water-pack tubs. I used two tubs, and it worked fine.)

*10-oz. jar blackberry preserves
(Jennifer says that preserves made from any red berry (strawberry, raspberry or cherry) will work. You don't taste the particular fruit, it just adds sweetness and texture. The first time, I used a jar of black cherry preserves. The second time, I was again limited to what the discount supermarket had, and I had trouble finding anything in the jam aisle marked “preserves.” I settled for a cupful of E.D. Smith Triple Fruit Wildberry spread, which is thinner than normal jam and seemed to work well.)

*1 tsp. vanilla extract

*1 cup liquid honey
(You may think you need to cut back on the honey after putting in a cupful of preserves or jam. However, we tried cutting back, tasted it after blending, and agreed that it did need pretty much close to the whole cupful. Remember, you’re adding a lot of unsweetened chocolate.)


Crust (if you’re following the recipe here): Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In blender or food processor, combine cookies and oil or margarine and pulse to make fine crumbs. Press into bottom of springform pan or pie plate. Bake 10 minutes and cool.

Filling: Melt chocolate in double boiler or over very low heat. Put remaining ingredients in bowl of food processor or blender and add melted chocolate. Process until very smooth, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides.

Pour filling into crust, smooth top, and refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours or overnight. Serves 12. Per serving: 409 calories, 17 g fat, 57 mg carb.


Marsha said...

Thanks for the recipe. I am going to make it, except I will figure out a gluten-free pie crust. I find that silken-tofu is very good for any kind of "fake pudding" kind of thing - just add the flavourings you want & voila.

However I have never been able to make tofu tasty in a main-course dish. A friend that went to China said they can make tofu taste like chicken. I have NOT been able to ever make it taste like anything except tofu.

Mama Squirrel said...

Marsha, I wish I could make hong sue tofu at home, but that's beyond me--I just admit my failings and order it when we get Chinese food. I don't know if it tastes like chicken, but it's very good.

We use soft tofu to make puddings or frozen desserts/popsicles (not usually as rich as this dessert though), but we don't use it in main dishes nearly as often as we used to (back in those pre-family days).

One thing you can do with soft tofu is use it as an egg substitute in things like waffles. You just blend it up with the other wet ingredients.