Sunday, April 21, 2013

Guest Post: Vegan (Parev) Chocolate Pie

A guest post by Daniel Stuhlman, who is a real academic, and a much better writter then I am.  While he is not a vegetarian, he does like to do vegetarian (parev) dishes.
Chocolate Pie
By Daniel Stuhlman
Chocolate, why do we eat so much chocolate?  The short answer it is, It makes us feel good.  Chocolate has more than 300 chemicals that cause a wide variety of good feelings.  It has been credited with helping to prevent disease. [1] The interaction of these chemical components causes a weak stimulation and the rich flavor and creamy texture makes the mouth feel good.

I want to thank Daniel Peikes for allowing me to write about chocolate pie in his blog.  My blog, Kol Safran, deals with library and educational topics and these comments would not fit.

I love chocolate.  Last Friday I wanted to make a special dessert that was different from anything that you could buy in a store that was chocolate, contained no dairy products, no eggs, and had less sugar per ounce than candy.  I wanted something smooth, not chewy or hard that would imitate the feeling of ice cream in the mouth.  I choose to make a chocolate pie using a tofu base.  Of course I searched the Internet for recipes from others bakers and cooks.  I found ideas that become the basis for the following recipe. 

(This is not a final version.  I ask you to try it and make comments to adjust the amounts. You could vary the cocoa, sugar and parve milk.)

1 16 oz package silken tofu, drained
½  cup sugar
2 heaping tablespoons of cocoa
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
 1 tablespoon corn starch
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate bar
¼ cup vanilla parve milk (I used almond milk; also try rice milk or soy milk.)

Put all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.  Pour into a glass pie pan.  Crust is optional. Bake at 350° F for 45-60 minutes until it looks firm and has some cracks.

Serve cold.

The picture above is what was left after serving it to my guests.

We had a discussion as to what to call this dish.  The description depends on whether you are selling it, serving it or eating it.  If you are selling then it is a high protein, low sugar dessert.  If you are eating, it is a sweet chocolate creamy cold dessert.  If you are serving, it is a chocolate pie.

[1] Here are just a couple of sample articles:  The following is a review article with abstracts and citations for 140 article on the benefits of chocolate in helping with heart disease. Galleano, Monica. Oteiza, Patricia I. Fraga, Cesar G. « Cocoa, chocolate, and cardiovascular disease.”  In:Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology. 54(6):483-90, 2009 Dec.    

Zomer, Ella. Owen, Alice. Magliano, Dianna J. Liew, Danny. Reid, Christopher M.             “The effectiveness and cost effectiveness of dark chocolate consumption as prevention therapy in people at high risk of cardiovascular disease: best case scenario analysis using a Markov model.” In: BMJ. 344:e3657, 2012.

Also see: Kuwana, Ellen. “Discovering the Sweet Mysteries of Chocolate” (last revised Oct. 10, 2012)  for a quick overview of the effects of chocolate.

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