Tag Archives: bryan mckinnon

Recipe: Raw Pumpkin Pie

Raw Pumpkin Pie: all photography in this post courtesy of Bryan McKinnon, http://www.shadowlight.smugmug.com.

My friend Catherine and her husband Greg were coming over for dinner Saturday night. She eats a mainly raw vegan diet, so I wanted to make a special treat that neither of us had tried before: Raw Pumpkin Pie. We followed the recipe by Veronica Bosgraaf in the Gluten-Free e-Cookbook I posted a link to a while back, and it turned out surprisingly well! I couldn’t believe how much the filling looked like a traditional pumpkin pie. I brought an extra slice to my friend Lonnette at work, and she raved about it on Facebook, asking for the recipe. So, here you go…

Ingredients for Crust: 2 c. almonds, 1 c. dates, 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract, 1/4 tsp. cinnamon.

Pulse crust ingredients in food processor, then press into glass pie plate.

Next, take half of a small pie pumpkin (about 6" diameter), peel, pit, and cube. That's right folks, no cooking involved. Make sure you have a sturdy peeler or use a sharp knife.

Filling Ingredients: 2 c. pumpkin puree (this means you will need to pulse the pumpkin cubes before measuring this ingredient), 1 to 1 1/2 c. dates, 1/4 c. raisins, 1/2 c. cashews, 2 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1/4 tsp. each nutmeg, cloves, and cardamom, and a dash (1/8 tsp.) salt. We also added about 1/3 c. water to get the right consistency (add this slowly, 1 Tbsp. at a time, as each pumpkin may have a varying amount of moisture).

Pulse on low in food processor for several minutes. Ours took about 10-12 minutes and about 1/3 c. water to look right. Scrape into pie crust.

Spread evenly into crust and refrigerate for 2 hours, or till set.

The Finished Product: Raw Pumpkin Pie

I served mine with a dollop of whipped cream; Catherine had hers all natural.

Mel & Catherine (no, we did not plan to match)

How to Eat a Pomegranate

One of my beautiful poms! All photography in this post by Bryan McKinnon, http://www.shadowlight.smugmug.com.

I went to my friendly, local grocer this Saturday and picked up two pomegranates. They were on sale for $2.49 each. When I got to the cash register, the first one rang up as $2.79. So, I asked the cashier to adjust the order. As a secondary note, the item was misspelled in their system (pomagrenete). I was able to spell the item correctly, so the manager gave me both for $2.49 total. Who says vocab lists never got you anywhere?! Anyway, here’s what you really want to know…how to eat a pomegranate:

1. Cut pomegranate in half.

The juicy kernels are called arils. Some Mediterraneans eat the white segments between the arils, but I discard it with the skin.

2. Cut each half into 3 or 4 segments. Hold each segment by its end and invert the segment's arc, forcing the arils to loosen and separate.

3. Discard skin and white segments. Enjoy!

The name pomegranate means seeded apple. It’s often used as a religious symbol of fruitfulness, as each fruit contains around 600 arils! This fruit is delicious on its own, and is often added to Persian dishes, like soups and salads.

Caution: the juice will stain, so if you’re feeding it to children, I recommend letting them wear play clothes and eating outside. If the juice gets on something you really like, like it got on my white kitchen curtains in my first pomegranate experience, simply rinse with cold water and wash immediately.