Raspberry Tart


After a meal last week, I thought about some of my recipes on the site.
You see, my sister in law, along with being vegan, suffers from Celiac Disease which is a gluten intolerance restricting her diet of all wheat, rye and barley products.
No meat, no dairy and no bread. Poor girl.

To her, wheat shows it’s ugly head often. It’s in so much more that the mere loaf of bread – it’s in cakes, pastries, muffins, most veggie burgers, hot dogs and soy sauce.

This was the problem I feared when I first met with my vegan cooking challenge. I’ve gone on about creating a satisfying meal for my guests. I have to admit I feel just awful when I see her eating only hummus or grilled vegetables then skipping dessert, all while we’re all slathering our freshly toasted buns with bar-b-qed goodies.

It’s not the full meal, but here’s a little more than a popsicle for your next dessert; a gluten free, no bake raspberry tart. Happy early birthday, my dear. I hope you like it.

RASPBERRY TART

You will need about 2 Pints (3-4 cups) of fresh raspberries for the final topping.

CRUST

1/3 Cup Almonds
1/2 Cup Oatmeal
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup Margarine
1/8 teaspoon Salt (pinch)
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

In a saucepan, melt the margarine. Add the vanilla and brown sugar; mix well.
Simmer over a medium heat and allow to simmer for 2 -3 minutes.
In a food processor, combine the almonds and half of the oats, until well ground.
Add the remaining oatmeal, cinnamon and salt; pulsing to combine.
Empty the dry mixture into a medium sized bowl and pour over the hot syrup.
Once the crust mixture is well combined, transfer to an 8 inch tart pan.
Spread out and evenly press the mixture along the bottom and up the sides of the pan.
Chill to set, about 20 minutes or just while you prepare the filling.

TOFU CREAM

1/2 Package Soft Silken Tofu
1 teaspoon Lemon Juice
1 1/2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
4 Tablespoons Confectioners Sugar
1 1/2 Tablespoons Arrowroot Powder
2 Tablespoons Soy Milk

Combine tofu and sugar in a food processor and process until smooth.
With the machine running, add the arrowroot, soy milk, lemon juice and vanilla through the feeder cap.
Taste and adjust vanilla and soy milk for flavour and consistency, if necessary.

Pour into the waiting crust and return it to the refrigerator.

CHOCOLATE GANACHE

1/2 Cup Chocolate Pieces, vegan
1 Tablespoon Margarine
2 Tablespoons Soy Milk

Melt the chocolate pieces in a double boiler or in a heat safe bowl fitted over a pan of simmering water.
Stir in the margarine.
Whisk in the milk to combining until smooth.
Pour over chilling tart.

Top with raspberries and dust with confectioners sugar, if desired.
Chill until ready to serve.

Mushroom Paté


MUSHROOM PATÉ

2 Portabella Mushrooms, finely chopped
10 Shitake Mushrooms, 3/4 Cup trimmed and sliced
1 Leek, white and light green parts only, well rinsed and finely chopped
2 Cloves Garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1/2 teaspoon Salt
Freshly Ground Black Pepper, to taste
1/2 teaspoon Dried Rosemary, ground
1/3 Cup Red Bell Pepper, finely minced
3 Tablespoons Brandy
2 teaspoons Parsley, finely chopped
2 teaspoons Chives, finely chopped
1 teaspoon Arrowroot Powder or Cornstarch

Heat the oil in a large sauté pan and add the garlic and leeks.
Once the leeks are soft, add the mushrooms, salt, pepper and rosemary.
Sauté over a medium high setting until the mushrooms are tender and have begun to dry.
Add the peppers and brandy continuing to sauté for 2 minutes more.
Toss in 1 teaspoon of the parsley and remove from heat.
Cool then add to the food processor pulsing to chop.
Firmly press mixture into ramekins.

To make the chive gelée for the topping, add 1/3 cup of water to a small saucepan and bring to a boil.
Add the chopped chives and remaining parsley.
Dissolve the arrowroot powder in 1/4 cup cold water and add, stirring to thicken.
Remove from the heat and cool slightly.
Spoon an even layer over the prepared mushroom paté and refrigerate until set and ready to serve.

Granola Bars


Yummy. Can we say waay better than store bought? And the kids like ’em too.

GRANOLA BARS

1/4 Cup Vegan Margarine
1/2 Cup Dark Brown Sugar (packed) – Check your source
1/4 Cup Maple Syrup
1 teaspoon Vanilla
3 Cups Rolled Oats (regular, not quick)
1 Cup Rice Krispies
1/2 Cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1/2 Cup Banana Chips (crushed), optional
1/2 Cup Hazelnuts (crushed), optional

Method

Combine the maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla and margarine in a saucepan.
Melt the sugar and bring the mixture to a boil.
Reduce the heat and simmer for about two minutes.
Remove the sugar mixture from the heat and allow it to cool slightly.
Combine the oatmeal, rice, banana chips and half of the chocolate pieces (or other dry ingredients) in a large bowl.
Pour over the brown sugar mixture, stirring to coat everything well.

Spread evenly in a 13″ x 9″ dish.

Press remaining chocolate over top to incorporate and flatten the bars.

Refrigerate for about 2 hours or until set.

Cut into bars (or squares).

Alternates to try

Omit the banana chips and chocolate for one cup worth of the following combinations:

Dried cherries (1/4C) and chocolate (1/2C) with slivered almonds (1/4C)

Dried coconut (1/4C), banana chips (1/2C) and sunflower seeds (1/4C)

Dried cranberries and hemp seeds