Sunday, November 13, 2011
Slow Cookin' Sunday: Pumpkin Custard
My husband put the holiday lights on the house yesterday. And we also got one Christmas tree up in the front foyer, but the lights are a mess so that's going to a huge project for me today. As an added bonus, a local radio station went all Christmas music a few days ago. (Yes, we are those people who could easily skip Thanksgiving and go straight to Christmas.) We love Christmas. It brings such a fuzzy, warm feeling.
This is the first year my oldest daughter really gets what's going on with the whole Santa Claus thing. We were at the mall the other day and Santa Claus was there for pictures (which totally surprised me) and we walked past and she screamed, "Look, look mommy. It's Santa Claus, Santa Claus."
He smiled and waved to her which put a little skip in her step, but for a moment I was stymied and a tad but nervous, thinking: What do I say? Why is he here? How can he be here and every other place in the world? Does she know he's fake?
I soon remembered she doesn't think adult thoughts. She thinks four-year-old thoughts. There is no other place than here for her.
Phew. Crisis swiftly averted. (No thanks to my paranoid thoughts.)
We also finished winterizing the outside yesterday because it was once again an unseasonable 60 degrees out. We finished putting away some flower pots and I pulled out the zinnias, cut down the perennials and flattened out the veggie garden bed. There is so much dirt in there from the digging of the shed.
Since it was so mild, I decided to throw some grass-fed beef ribeyes I got on sale at Whole Foods on the grill for dinner. They were really good with their little partners of garlicky broccoli. Luckily, I was on the ball, and we had dessert to end such a great dinner -- this wonderful thick and luscious dairy-free, gluten-free and refined sugar-free pumpkin custard I made in the crockpot on Friday night.
I picked from the farm and roasted in the crockpot a few days ago. Although the weather still feels balmy in Chicago terms, there's no denying autumn with desserts like this -- thick and slightly sweet, but definitely spicy, pumpkin pie in bowl form.
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Custard
Makes about 8, 1/3-cup servings
2 large eggs
12 ounces light coconut milk (from can)
1/3 cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons coconut palm sugar
2 tablespoons Earth Balance soy-free spread, melted
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Flesh from 2 whole roasted sugar pumpkins or a 15 ounce can of pumpkin purée
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup flour (I used a brown rice flour blend*)
Non-dairy whipped topping
Maple syrup, for drizzling
Spray slow cooker with cooking spray. I use my Misto. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, coconut milk, maple syrup, melted Earth Balance and vanilla extract. Add pumpkin and whisk well.
Add the cinnamon through the salt and whisk well.
Gently fold in flour until all of the lumps are gone. Pour into the slow cooker and cook on low for three to four hours. My oblong slow cooker is hot hot hot, so mine cooked this in three hours. Test using a toothpick. If the center comes out clean, it's done.
Cool in the refrigerator overnight. Serve topped with a dollop of non-dairy whipped topping (optional), a drizzle of maple syrup and some chopped pecans.
To top this off, there are three grams of fiber and 3 grams of protein in each serving -- big-time bonus!
*My brown rice flour blend is as follows: 3 cups of brown rice flour, 1 cup potato starch, 1/2 cup tapioca starch. Mix well and store in an airtight container.
Nutrition Information Per 1/3 cup serving: Calories 165; Total Fat 7g; Total Carb 22g; Fiber 3g; Sugars 11g; Protein 3g
*Nutrition information has been calculated using an online recipe calculator tool.