Happy December. Thanksgiving has come and gone and as we dwell in this space right before Christmas starts to rev up, I wanted to share this little vegan recipe that I made with a friend Thanksgiving morning. But as film photography goes, there is always a bit of backlog.
This recipe is was copied from Isa Chandra Moskowitz blog, but on the day of these photos, we were following her new Vegan Holiday Cookbook. My friend Julia took on the task of making the pie crust and pumpkin puree from scratch. I was inspired by the bright orange of the squash and the kneading of the dough, I had to get my camera out and capture the perfect Thanksgiving deed.
Unfortunately, the film didn’t capture the vibrancy of the colors; but I am still happy with the way they came out, a sort of homeliness to them.
*I copied the blog recipe below (linked above) to accompany my photography.*
~ Agar powder is a crucial ingredient here for getting the perfect texture. It’s similar to a vegan gelatin, but made from seaweed, not whatever gross stuff gelatin is made from. It comes in flakes and powder form, but I prefer the powder because it is so fool-proof and easy to work. Check your local Asian market for Telephone brand, or you can order it from Amazon or Vegan Essentials. One small jar will get you through dozens of pies, so it’s a worthwhile ingredient to have on hand.
Single pastry crust, fit into a 9 inch pie plate
3 cups cooked pumpkin or other sweet winter squash
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1/2 cup plain unsweetened soy milk (or your favorite non-dairy milk)
4 teaspoons canola oil
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 /4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Pinch ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon agar powder
Preheat oven to 350 F. In a blender, pulse together pumpkin, maple syrup, soy milk, canola oil, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, salt, cornstarch and agar powder until very smooth. Pour into the pie shell and bake for 60 to 65 minutes until the center looks semi-firm not liquidy. Check the edges of the crust after baking for 40 minutes; if the edges appear to be browning too rapidly carefully remove the pie and apply crust protectors to the edges to keep from getting too dark.
Remove from oven and onto a cooling rack for 30 minutes, then chill for at least 4 hours before slicing. Serve with Rad Whip, vegan whipped topping or your favorite vegan vanilla ice cream. In the photo, we piped cream around the edges of the pie with a large decorating tip.
I will be traveling to LA to spend time with my family. Growing up baking pumpkin bread before Thanksgiving has been the marker to my senses that the holiday season has begun. It’s funny how I can’t seem to replicate the same magical holiday essence when I bake in my own kitchen, it has to be at my mom’s. Maybe because she has a nicer, bigger kitchen 😉 .
My sister, mom and I usually own one recipe and bake a dozen of them to give out to family and friends. My recipe is a cornmeal pound cake with rosemary syrup; my mom makes the pumpkin bread, and my sister makes the chocolate chip scones. This year unfortunately, my sister won’t be able to join us, it gets complicated when we all start growing our own families… but I will be sure to share these recipe’s here.
What will you be making for the holidays?