Saturday, March 10, 2012

Banana Cream Pie - Oh my!

Since I have a major sweet tooth, I am always on the prowl for wholesome, dairy-free dessert recipes.  It's very hard to come by many recipes that don't include refined sugar or vegetable oil, so I was pleased to find this recipe for Banana Cream Pie with Almond-Coconut Crust from The Diva Dish.   It's rare for me to make dessert that doesn't include chocolate, but this one looked too good to pass by!  I used organic, Grade B maple syrup  in place of honey/agave for this recipe.    I don't care for the taste of honey, and here's my scoop on agave...

Contrary to popular belief, Agave Nectar is not "all natural".  In fact, it's a highly refined sweetener and "the end result [of its refining] contains as much as 90% fructose.  Keep in mind that high fructose corn syrup with all its documented ill effects attributable to its fructose content is only 55% fructose". See: When Natural Foods Aren't Natural: Agave Nectar  (This is not to imply that HFCS is any better for you!)  Research has shown that fructose causes high elevation in blood sugar levels resulting in weight gain and the potential for diabetes, among other health benefits detriments.   You can use it in the recipe if you choose, just wanted to share my 2 cents!

Okay, okay.... on to the recipe!

Banana Cream Pie with Almond-Coconut Crust
(Serves 6-8)
Ingredients for the crust:
 1/2 cup raw almonds, soaked for 2+ hours and drained
8 oz. raw, flaked coconut
1 heaping tbsp. maple syrup
2 heaping tbsp. coconut oil
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
generous pinch of salt

Ingredients for the filling:
2 cups raw cashews, soaked for 2+ hrs and drained
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. vanilla extract
pinch of salt
2 bananas sliced
2 large bananas sliced for layering and garnish

Place the almonds in a food processor and grind them. Add the coconut and process for a minute or so. Then add in the maple syrup, coconut oil, vanilla and salt. Process until everything is incorporated. Remove from bowl and press into the bottom and side of a 9 inch pie pan. Place in the freezer while you make the filling.

Next, place the cashews and about 1/4 cup water in the food processor. Blend well, then slowly add in the lemon juice, coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla, bananas and salt. Add a little more water, if you need to (I did not need to).  Blend until very creamy. Remove the crust from the freezer and pour in about half of the filling. Scatter about half of the bananas on top, then the rest of the filling. Arrange the remaining bananas on top. Place in the freezer for a few hours, and leave at room temperature for at least an hour before serving. Store leftovers in the refrigerator, up to a few days.


Oh my goodness, there are just no words to adequately describe how delicious this tastes!!  It's so creamy and decadent, and the almond crust is the perfect crunchy compliment to the smooth filling.  Deeelicious!!  :)


Shaheen said...

This sounds pretty amazing, I should give it a go - a change from banana muffins or a banana loaf.

Christine said...

Yes, definitely give it a try! If you do, let me know what you think. :)

GroceryGeek said...

This looks DELISH! Thanks for sharing! I'm sooooooo going to try this one!!!

Christine said...

Thank you, GroceryGeek! It's one of my favorites!! Enjoy! :)