When I first started eating plant-based over 10 year ago, my entire food world opened up with possibility. Dates, coconut, almonds and cashews became new staple additions to my pantry.
If you’ve never tried a raw dessert, or entree for that matter, you must, you absolutely must. Raw-inspired recipes are simple to make, naturally gluten and dairy free, high in fibre and naturally flavoured. During the spring and summer, we’re always including more and more raw-inspired meals and desserts into our days, but they’re definitely something that can be enjoyed year round if you wish. Best of all, they taste so dreamy good, like this Addictive Banana Cream Pie by Laura-Jane Koers from her new cookbook, Cook Lively.
Laura-Jane is a fabulously talented and popular Canadian food blogger who’s work has appeared in Maclean’s, The National Post, Whole Foods, The Huffington Post, and on the CBC, among others. She currently runs one of the the most popular plant-based food websites on the internet, The Rawtarian; it’s like a raw/plant-based library containing so many simple, delicious and nutritious recipes everyone can love. Her web page also offers ready made meal plans, online raw food courses, a membership and community portal among other great sections. Amidst all that, Laura-Jane has also authored her very first cookbook “Cook Lively – 100 Quick and Easy Plant-Based Recipes for High Energy, Glowing Skin and Vibrant Living Using 10 Ingredients or Less”
Needless to say, I was so excited to receive an advanced copy of Laura-Jane’s new cookbook to review; it’s such an honour to be able to share one of her deliciously simple recipes with you today. Everything in Cook Lively looks so appetizing from her Instant Apple Cider Smoothie, the Baked Apple Breakfast Cake, Meaty Mushroom Burgers, Beet Sliders, and Chocolate Donut Holes. There is also a great section on stocking your pantry, useful kitchen equipment and a section containing a weekly meal plan and grocery list. All of Laura-Jane’s recipes are simple to prepare, unprocessed, light, healthy and don’t contain complicated ingredients or steps. This book has you covered whether you’re a seasoned plant-based foodie, new to healthy eating or simply want to try something different and better for you.
Of course, knowing me, I always flip to the dessert section of any cookbook first (insatiable sweet tooth), and I was immediately captivated by the popular Addictive Banana Cream Pie. And, with Steve being the banana cream pie addict that he is, I knew this was the recipe to share. The base of this dessert is a pleasantly sweet crust made from raw cashews, shredded coconut and dates (that’s it). The smooth, creamy filling is made from more raw cashews, ripe bananas, maple syrup and is tempered with fresh lemon juice, vanilla and sea salt. Topped with luscious Cashew Crème fraîche (page 225 of the cookbook) or dollops of coconut whip and fresh banana. It’s surprisingly easy to prepare, uber delicious and satisfying for the most discerning banana cream pie lovers. As Laura-Jane points out, this recipe is very forgiving, even if your blender isn’t very powerful. Also noteworthy, is that there is no nut soaking time required for this recipe, which I love. It doesn’t get any easier than that.
Cook Lively is now available (as of May 30th, 2017) and it comes highly recommend by yours truly as a new addition to your cookbook library. As a thank you to my readers, I’m happy to be working with the publishers to giveaway a free copy of Laura-Jane’s new cookbook to one lucky reader! To enter, make sure you’re subscribed to my blog and leave me a comment below sharing how you enjoy plant-based or raw foods in your day, or how you plan to include more of them in your day, it can be as simple as “eating fresh fruit for breakfast”. The contest will be open until June 10, 2017 and is available to Canadian residents only (apologies to my US and International readers).
** This giveaway is now closed**
I hope you love this recipe, and be sure to pick up a copy of Cook Lively for yourself; you’ll love it!
Recipe from Cook Lively, 100 Quick and Easy Plant-Based Recipes for High Energy, Glowing Skin and Vibrant Living Using 10 Ingredients or Less by Laura-Jane Koers. Copyright © 2017. Reprinted with permission by DeCapo Press, a subsidiary of Hachette Book Group, Inc.
ADDICTIVE BANANA CREAM PIE FROM "COOK LIVELY"
For the Crust
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup pitted dates tightly packed
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
For the Banana Filling
- 2 medium bananas
- 3/4 cup raw cashews
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1/3 cup coconut oil
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract optional
- 1/8 tsp sea salt
Line an standard pie plate (about 9") with parchment paper. Set aside.
To make the crust, process all the crust ingredients in a food processor until the mixture sticks together when squeezed and the dates are greatly reduced in size and almost invisible (about 40 seconds).
Distribute the loose mixture evenly across the parchment lined pan. Using your hands, press the mixture down very firmly, paying special attention to the edges and forming a slight crust lip around the edges of the pan. Set aside once firmly in place.
To make the banana filling, add all the filling ingredients to your blender. Blend until creamy and smooth.
Pour the blended mixture onto the crust. Smooth it out with the back of a spoon.
Cover and place the pie in the freezer. Freeze until firm (at lest 8 hours). You will be able to slice this very cleanly when ready. If it's too soft to slice, it's not frozen enough yet.
Enjoy immediately. Store in the freezer at all times.
For best flavour, it's best to use bananas that are not too ripe or green; they should have just a few brown spots on the peel. Store the dessert in the freezer for best keeping. I found this recipe to also works well using an 8" spring form pan lined with parchment paper.