Chocolate Cream Pie with Fresh BC Blueberries (Gluten-free & Vegan)

Chocolate Cream Pie with Fresh BC Blueberries

I’m baaaaaack! After taking a couple of months hiatus from the blog, I am back with a new fantastic recipe that is perfect for your upcoming summer BBQ party. I tell ya, if you’re the one who has been assigned desserts for the next pot-luck – this Chocolate Cream Pie with Fresh BC Blueberries is perfect! Decadent, creamy, cool and utterly satisfying, this pie will do the trick to win over the hearts of your friends and family. Of course, check about nut allergies before you bring it – wouldn’t want a serious allergic reaction to ruin your fun…

Chocolate Cream Pie with Fresh BC Blueberries

Who knew that chocolate and blueberries went so well together? Anyone? Anyone? Why have I never had this combo until now?!?!?!?! This combination is perfect, especially when the blueberries are fresh and from your local farmer. We have an earlier harvest season here on the West Coast compared to the East. And lucky us we get to have blueberries at a very reasonable cost so early in the summer.

Chocolate Cream Pie with Fresh BC Blueberries

Chocolate is back in my diet…in small amounts. How I was dealing as a new mother with no dark chocolate (or wine!) is beyond me! Seriously, as much as I love my kale, let’s be honest, it’s NOT chocolate. And everyone deserves some chocolate in their lives. I still have to watch my intake and not have too much or Baby A will be refluxing for several hours.

Every summer since we moved to British Columbia we go to an organic blueberry farm and pick blueberries. It’s only a half hour drive to get to the farm, which really is not far to have fresh blueberries in the fridge. We buy buckets full. And I mean buckets. Literally. My husband LOVES his berries and has to eat them every day. So we usually make to trips to pick, one near the beginning of the harvest and one near the end. The batch we buy at the end of the harvest gets pack and frozen so we can use the berries through the winter when the cost to buy them in the store is not affordable. It’s great for the family to get out picking, connect to nature and see how our food grows and gets to our table.

Chocolate Cream Pie with Fresh BC Blueberries

What about you and your family? Do you go blueberry, strawberry or even apple picking at harvest time?

Chocolate Cream Pie with Fresh BC Blueberries (Gluten-free & Vegan)
 
Ingredients
  • CRUST
  • 20 pitted dates, soaked 15mins in warm water
  • 1 cup raw pecans
  • ¾ cups raw walnuts
  • ½ cup cocoa powder (don't skimp on this part!)
  • ½ cup GF flour blend (I used Trader Joe's for this recipe)
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 1 tbsp chis seeds soaked in ¼ cup water for 5mins until a thick gel
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla
  • 1 heaping tbsp coconut oil
  • CREAM FILLING
  • 1 cup raw cashews soaked in water for min 3hrs
  • ¾ cup full fat coconut milk (Thai kitchen's brand has mini cans that work perfectly)
  • ½ cup cocoa powder (again, don't skimp on this!)
  • ¼ cup coconut sugar
  • TOPPING
  • 1-2 cups of fresh, cleaned blueberries
Instructions
  1. Get your cashews soaking. Set aside and make crust.
  2. Soak your dates in warm water for 15mins. In a food processor with an 'S' blade, take your pecans and walnuts and grind them until it resembles a meal-like texture. Place in medium sized bowl.
  3. Next, take the soaked dates and drain water. Place in food processor and make into a paste, scraping sides with a spatula if necessary. Add to nut mixture along with remaining crust ingredients and mix until well blended.
  4. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Take a 8" spring-form cake pan and grease with a little coconut oil.
  5. Take your raw crust in a ball and place in the middle of the pan. Then gently press the dough around the bottom and sides of the pan until completely even & smooth.
  6. Bake for 10-15mins, keeping an eye on it so that it does not burn. When done, let cool completely still in the pan before you put your filling in.
  7. For the filling, drain water from cashews and place all cream filling ingredients in the food processor with and 'S' blade and blend until smooth. This can be done with a high powered blender as well. Once completely smooth, pour into cooled crust, cover tightly with plastic wrap and place in freezer for 4hrs to set.
  8. When ready to serve, remove spring-form and allow the pie to thaw for 30mins or longer if it was in the freezer for more then 4hrs. Pour blueberries on top. Using a sharp knife (run under hot water for 1min for a clean cut) cut into slices and serve. Enjoy!

 

Vancouver Sun Run 2014 Recap

We have been in Vancouver now for three years and I can’t believe that it has taken me this long to do the Vancouver Sun Run! This year was the 30th year running and a little over 45,000 people participated. The last time I ran a 10K was The Terry Fox Run before I was pregnant with Baby A. This would be my second 10K run and I think I’ve caught “the runners bug”.

Training for this run began a month ago and I set aside three days a week (Monday, Wednesday & Friday) for practice runs at the running track, bought myself a solid pair of running shoes and set out with the jogging stroller to build my stamina up. I quickly learned during my training that to keep my energy up and maintain my milk supply for Baby A, I would need to eat more, keep it clean and drink copious amounts of water. I began to use juices & smoothies from the Vibrant Life Cleanse Program & Cookbook in addition to increasing my calories. For breastfeeding alone I need 2000, so you can imagine what kind of a Hoover eating machine I became. I was buying fruit and veggies in bulk…

Vancouver Sun Run

As mentioned in my last post, my two biggest concerns about doing this run was that I would injure myself and/or loose my milk supply. The last Monday run before the Sun Run I had to stop at 3.16K as my right knee began to hurt a lot. I was concerned that I was getting runners knee and decided I would take the rest of the week off from running and switch my training up to strengthening exercises. This meant I would have to trust my body for stamina to avoid injury. For the remainder of the week, I iced my knees every morning, rested my legs as often as possible – avoiding any possible strain on my knees. I went back to my yoga and ballet training – holding 1 minute planks for core strength and doing slow bridge lifts (10 seconds up, hold for 10 seconds, 10 seconds to lower) for quad strength. I drank close to a gallon of water a day to ensure I was hydrated and my joints and muscles had lots of fluid.

The morning of the Vancouver Sun Run I was up early with the kids and had been up several times through the night breastfeeding. I also was dealing with my monthly cycle returning since giving birth which was something I was not expecting. I knew I had done good preparation before hand but wanted to make sure I did not lose energy during the run. I packed a banana to eat during the run and planned to stop at each water station even though it would slow my time down. The run began at 9:00am but since I was running with Baby A in the jogging stroller, I was in the last group to go through the start line. This meant I did a lot of standing around and even had to pull over to the side before the race began to breastfeed Baby A. With over 45, 000 people running it takes time to herd everyone through the start line! It was 10:21 when I crossed and I reminded myself that if I could beat cancer, I could do this run. This put me in a positive frame of mind right from the beginning.

I ran the first 4K straight, calculating a lot of my time on how the hell I was going to get myself and the jogging stroller around all the walkers and unaware children who were also participating. I figured out quickly that if I found another runner with a jogging stroller or person pushing a wheelchair, I could get behind them and get through the crowd. My voice also became a huge tool as others became fatigued and started walking, the only way to get them to move was to yell “Stroller passing left!”. I may have scared a few people along the way…correction, I definitely scared a few people!

By 4.5K I pulled to the side and grabbed the banana and ate half while continuing to walk. This gave me enough energy to continue to 7.5K before having to eat more. I was able to finish strong with my app recording 10.49K run at 1hr 29mins and my time per kilometer being 8mins, 31 seconds – 20 seconds faster per kilometer than during my training. The extra distance that I ran was most likely due to the copious amounts of weaving I had to do to get around others. And no knee pain during or after the run! Although I was aiming for 1:20, I’m really happy with my results. If you’ve ever considered running in a race but are afraid that you are not strong enough or that you can’t do it, let me tell you something – you can. I don’t come from an athletic background, it was only my second time running at this distance and I was able to do it! I look forward to the next 10K run and the next goal is a half marathon.

Vancouver Sun Run Finish Line