Okay, so I’m definitely one of those people that gets overly excitable about the changing of seasons and upcoming holidays waaaay before most people even begin thinking about them. Autumn was no exception to this and I’ve been thinking about and creating Autumn and Halloween recipes for the past few weeks already! This was one of the first to be pulled out of the hat, after descovering the first of the pumpkins had arrived in the supermarkets whilst doing the weekly shop. Before this year, I’d never actually really been that fond of pumpkin. To be honest, I hadn’t properly tried pumpkin until last year and then when I did, for some reason I just wasn’t a huge fan. However, now, I’m thinking that I might have been a little hasty to judge, as pumpkin can actually create many rather tasty dishes and now I seem to be including it in everything.
A great way to try and make healthy eating more affordable is to focus on simple, wholesome ingredients and also using produce that’s in season. My local supermarket now has a huuuge supply of pumpkins.. I think i’m already on my 3rd or 4th one! I think I might have become a little obsessed with them! They’re just so versatile.. I didn’t really just how many dishes you can add pumpkin to! I recently made a pumpkin protein chocolate mousse and it was absolutely delicious, if I do say so myself! I’ve also come to realise, that it’s actually an amazing thing to use for making desserts. If you roast some pumpkin and blend it into a puree, you can add it to things like porridge, smoothies, blend into a soup and use in baking or to make things like chocolate mousse. Pumpkin puree is a great substitute for fats in baking, as it helps to bind ingredients together and adds moisture to the mixture. I’ve also made some pumpkin spice cupcakes that you’ll be able to get the recipe for soon!
So, enough of me waffling on (as per usual), I thought it was high time that I actually got onto the topic of the pumpkin pie! This isn’t the most traditional pumpkin pie.. in fact, it’s probably not traditional in the slightest; other than the fact that it contains pumpkin! The majority of this dessert is raw (apart from the pumpkin puree) and is completely vegan, gluten and refined sugar free! The base is a biscuity style combination, with hints of cacao for a nice chocolatey flavour. As for the filling (my favourite part), this is a deliciously sweet and decadent, creamy pumpkin filling consisting of pumpkin (obviously) blended with sweet, gooey dates and almond butter. I also added a little drizzle of maple cashew butter sauce to finish the whole thing off. This was a bit of a last minute addition, right before the photos were taken, but I think is now something that will be making a regular appearance around here. This is perfect for drizzling over a whole multitude of sweet treats and is a little bit like a cold custard! It’s so simple to make and tastes sooooo good!
Cacao crusted pumpkin pie
- 1 cup oats
- 1/2 cup ground almonds
- Tbsp coconut oil
- Tbsp date syrup
- Tbsp cacao powder
- Pinch sea salt
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/2 cup dates
- 2 tbsp Meridian Foods almond butter
- Tsp coconut oil
- 1/3 tsp cinnamon
- Pinch each of ground ginger and nutmeg
- 2 tbsp cashew butter
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- Vanilla extract
- Coconut milk
- Add the oats into your food processor and blend into a flour. Now, add in the remaining base ingredients and process everything together until well combined and starting to stick together. Transfer this into your cake tin- I would recommend using a springform/loose bottom tin. Firmly press the mixture into the tin to create a smooth, even surface. Take some of the mixture slightly up the side of the tin to create a little wall of crust around the edge. Leave in the freezer to set whilst you make the filling.
- To your food processor, add in all of the ingredients for the pumpkin filling and blend until really smooth and creamy. Pour this over the base and return to the freezer to set.
- For the sauce, mix together the cashew butter, a dash of vanilla and one tbsp of maple syrup at a time. Add in a little coconut milk to thin everything out until you have a runny, smooth consistency.
- After your cake has been in the freezer for a few hours, or when you’re ready to serve, cut into slices and drizzle with the sauce and sprinkle over some crushed pecans.