Ruth

Ruth is from Wales and has lived abroad for nearly 10 years, she enjoys her vegan lifestyle, loves animals and hopes to inspire others along the way. Her new blog is up and running at http://ruthculbreth.wordpress.com

Who on earth is lucky enough to have a mother-in-law who has a very handsome son and is a retired nurse so can be on call for any ailments you may find yourself with (I am a hypochondriac! ..eeek, I should get that checked out,) but is also a fantastic cook and a vegan one at that!? ME, that is who, and I am holding onto her!

Now and again I will find myself with a recipe in my inbox and I am storing them all for when we move to the UK and have daily access to the ingredients! My mother-in-law, Louann (how homely and film-like is that name?) is an American and spoils her husband rotten with amazing food all day long. I have already planned out our first visit to America and, more importantly, the large trousers I will buy for when we come home after all her food!

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Here is a recipe for vegan ‘Holiday Pie’ by Louann:

Makes 8 servings.

INGREDIENTS

CRUST
– 10 large pitted Medjool dates
– 3/4 cup rolled oats
– 1/4 cup raw unsweetened shredded dried coconut
– 1/4 cup pecan halves

FILLING
– 1/2 cup maple syrup
– 1/4 cup unsulphured blackstrap molasses
– 1 cup vegan chocolate chips
– 5 pitted Medjool dates photo
– 2 tablespoons vegan margarine
– 2 tablespoons filtered or spring water
– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 1 1/2 cups pecan halves

TOPPING
– 15 pecan halves

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

To make the crust put the dates, oats, coconut, and pecans in a high-performance blender or food processor and process to the consistency of soft dough. Transfer the dough onto a board and form it into a ball. Flatten the dough slightly with your hands and then use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a 10-inch round. Invert the dough onto an ungreased 9-inch pie plate. Press the date mixture evenly over the bottom of the plate, pushing it up the sides of the pie plate as you go, to make a crust.

To craft a pretty edge to the crust, use your index finger to push the inner edge of the crust out, while pinching the outer edge in with the thumb and index finger of your other hand to make a classic scallop edge around the piecrust.

To make the filling, put the maple syrup, molasses, chocolate chips, pitted dates, margarine, water, and vanilla extract in a blender and process until very smooth. Pour the maple mixture in a medium bowl. Fold in 1 1/2 cups pecan halves.

Pour the filling into the crust and smooth the top using a rubber spatula. Gently press 15 pecans halves into the top of the pie, arranging them in a pleasing manner. Put the pie on a baking sheet and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the edges start to set and brown. Tent the pie with foil and bake for 5 to 8 minutes more, or until the pie has almost set in the middle. The filling will still be somewhat soft.

Carefully put the pie on a wire rack (the filling will be very hot!) and let cool for 1 hour. Cover and chill for at least 2 hours.

Cover and store leftover pie in the refrigerator for up to three days.

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