Tag Archives: pie

No-fat Vegan Chocolate-Walnut and Pear Tart

No-fat Vegan Chocolate-Walnut & Pear Tart

It is harvest time for beautiful, juicy pears, and I’ve got pear trees laden with fruit this year. There are so many delicious possibilities for fat-free and vegan pear dishes.  I’ve recently seen some amazing online recipes for Chocolate-Pear confections, but all of them share common ingredients that I do not eat: butter, milk, cream. I enthusiastically took on the challenge, and today I present an absolutely sumptuous fat-free dairy-free tart that you can serve proudly to anyone you know.

This tart is more accurately a pie, so it is deep, moist, and should be served in thin slices.  For the crust, I’ve adapted the wonderful pie crust from “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease” that is built on apple juice and grape nuts.  I’ve added some unsweetened cocoa, creating a crisp hearty frame for the deep chocolate filling.  I’ve used a great gluten-free chocolate cake mix from Bob’s Red Mill and enhanced it with ground walnuts, resulting in a super moist center studded with vanilla-poached glazed pear.   Enjoy this and share it with your friends.  They’ll probably hug you, and their healthy hearts will thank you!

Chocolate-Walnut and Pear Tart

Crust

1 TBSP unsweetened cocoa
3 TBSP frozen apple juice concentrate
1 1/2 C Grape Nuts cereal (not flakes…they have oil)

Stir the ingredients together until well mixed.  Spoon all into a 9″ pie plate, pressing crumbs up the side to form a crust.  Bake at 375 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until beginning to brown on the edges and crisp.  Cool for 5 minutes while you prepare the filling.

Filling

1 C shelled walnuts
1 1/2 C Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Chocolate Cake Mix
1 TBSP flax meal softened in 3 TBSP of water
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C vanilla soymilk (or any non-dairy milk)

Grind the walnuts for about 1 minute in your food processor.  Add the cake mix and pulse until mixed.  Add the remaining ingredients and mix 30 seconds until fully mixed.  This will be a fairly thick batter.  Pour into the cooled crust.

Poached Pears

2 ripe Bartlett pears, peeled, cored, halved
1/2 C sugar
1 TBSP vanilla
1/4 water

Put all ingredients into a sauce pan and simmer for about 5 minutes.  Drain the pears and slice into 1/8″ thick pieces.  Press into the filling, fanning out somewhat for a pretty look.  Bake the tart for 15 minutes in a 350 degree oven.  If you wish, brush the pears with a bit of apple juice concentrate to glaze them. Return to oven and bake another 20 minutes or until a knife barely comes clean.  Do not over bake – you want this to be moist and fudgy.

Individual Almond Tart Crust

Individual Honey Almond Tart Crust

I’ve been looking for a way to make fat free crusts for tarts and pies. One idea is to make a cookie that can be molded into individual tart crusts while it is still hot. I’ve adapted this vegan fortune cookie recipe from Vegan Treats & Eats blog. This recipe works perfectly well without any oil, so give it a try and fill it with some luscious mousse for a sweet and healthy end to your next dinner party.

Individual  Almond Tart Crust

3 tsp. EnerG Egg Replacer + 1/4 C warm water, whisked together
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. almond extract
8 tsp. water
1/2 C all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. cornstarch
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 C granulated sugar

Instructions

1. Cut out 12 5-inch squares of baking parchment paper.  You will be able to do 24 crusts, since you will use each paper twice by flipping it over to the unused side for a second crust. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg replacer, extracts, and water together well. In a separate bowl, stir together the dry ingredients until well mixed and then combine with the wet ingredients, stirring until you have a smooth, runny batter.

3. Set a parchment square on a large cookie sheet. Pour 2 to 3 TBSP of batter onto the square, making sure that the cookie is not larger than the paper.  You are aiming for about a 4-inch diameter cookie. Repeat until your cookie sheet is has six cookies.

4. Bake until the outer 1/2-inch of each cookie turns a bit brown, or 11 to 12 minutes.

5. Remove one cookie at a time from the oven and working very quickly, peel the paper from each cookie and mold the cookie into a cup over an inverted 2″ diameter form (the bottom of a jelly jar, or a metal measuring cup).

6. Hold the cookie around the form for 30 seconds or until it begins to harden in shape.

7. Repeat the process, doing 6 tart shells at a time.  Hold at room temperature on a cookie sheet until just before serving, then fill with any delicious vegan no-fat mousse. The unfilled shells will begin to soften after 8 hours, so just pop them back in a 300 degree oven for 10 minutes to re-crisp!

These tart shells are delicious, but so are these variations:

Chocolate tart shell:
Add 4 to 6 TBSP unsweetened cocoa to the batter (good with chocolate flavored mousse

Faux “Coconut” tart shell:
Add 1/2 tsp. coconut extract to batter, and sprinkle 1 tsp. whole oats in the center of each cookie before baking (good with chocolate mousse or honey-vanilla mousse with fresh berries).