Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Lacto-Fermented Coniferous Apple Wheat Graham Cracker Pie (Yogurt Pineapple Pie)

Sometimes I wonder if our transition into whole foods would have been easier if I had known about Sue Gregg.

I have previously described our journey into granola-dom that began with Jordan Rubin's book, The Maker's Diet, and was later strengthened by the Nourishing Traditions cookbook authored by Sally Fallon. Although these were both fabulous books, the radical changes they proposed, even though they were necessary in our family life, were slightly overwhelming.

At the time we began our journey we only had a newborn Mr. Smackdown, so kid pleasing food wasn't a priority. Restoring my health and following what we felt God had impressed upon us was our main objective. I experimented with lots of fermented foods, raw vegetables, green smoothies, and supplements.

But now that I have three sets of delicate taste buds to feed nutritious food to, taste has certainly become a priority.

And that is what I love about the Sue Gregg cookbooks. Sue and her husband, Rich, have skillfully blended taste, whole foods nutrition, and economy into each recipe. The cookbooks are a primer down the rabbit hole of a healthy, whole foods, and potentially organic lifestyle. My impression of Sue and Rich Gregg is that they earnestly want you to experiment with their recipes before you purchase their cookbooks. I think that says a lot about their heart, goals, and ministry.

This past weekend, Mr. Smackdown and I took the opportunity to make one of the many free recipes found on The Sue Gregg website. The eager taste testers were a missionary couple (the wife being one of my dearest friends) who came for dinner. Having lived overseas for some time, I felt that they would be the perfect subjects in my attempt to sneak a healthy dessert into the meal, to really test whether the recipe was a viable alternative to traditional desserts. Additionally, I wanted to know if the recipe was kid friendly in production and taste.

We experimented with this Yogurt Pie recipe in our granola laboratory and you can, too!

Yogurt Pie

A light, low fat dessert and so easy to make!
Your anti-health food eaters will not guess that it is made from yogurt.

AMOUNT: 8" Square Bake Pan (Serves 9)

1. Make graham cracker crust by blending together:

1 cup graham cracker crumbs, about 1 packet
of 6 crackers (whole grain such as Mi-Del or
New Morning brand available in health food stores.
I found them at Kroger.
Additionally, you can pulverize the cracker in a Vita Mix or blender.)

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) melted butter (unsalted preferred)
2 tablespoons Sucanat, or Rapadura (preferred)
or brown sugar or sugar

2. Pat crumbs into bottom of 8" square bake pan and chill in freezer for 10-12 minutes.

3. Drain thoroughly, reserving juice: 8 oz. can crushed pineapple, unsweetened
(I forgot to buy a can of pineapple, but we just so happened to have a fresh pineapple. I cored, cut, and strained the fruit to obtain 1/3 cup of pineapple juice.)

And, of course, Mr. Smackdown made sure to put the remnants in the compost bucket!

4. Blend together in order given and let stand 5 minutes to soften:
Drained pineapple juice (about 1/3 cup)
2 envelopes (4 teaspoons) unflavored gelatin

5. To dissolve gelatin bring juice-gelatin mixture to a boil over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with wire whisk; remove from heat and blend in thoroughly:
1/4 cup honey

6. Blend together well in mixing bowl with wire whisk:
3 cups plain yogurt
(whole, pasteurized, non-homogenized preferred)
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
reserved crushed pineapple (about 3/4 cup from can)
dissolved gelatin and honey
1/2 cup medium shred coconut, unsweetened, optional
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract, optional
(add with coconut)

7. Pour onto graham cracker crust and chill in refrigerator until set.

8. To serve, score into servings and garnish each, if desired with:
1/2 fresh strawberry, optional
2 half-slices kiwi fruit, optional

The experiment was a success. One of our friends, who hails from a faraway land, ate an entire bowl of the yogurt pie and remarked on how good it was. (I'm not even sure he knew it was actually healthy.)

And Mr. Smackdown's opinion. . . "Let's make it again!"

Please check out more of Sue Gregg's recipes, learn about her family's journey into whole foods, and peruse their selection of cookbooks.

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Julia said...

yum. thanks for the recipe.
your son, Mr. Smackdown, shows the signs of good health and nutrition Dr. Weston Price talked about: a broad, handsom face and a broad, flat-ish nose. Good job!!

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