September means the start of pumpkin pie season. But instead of a white flour and sugar with butter or lard crust, how about a healthier flax-seed meal crust for any pie? You can also use flax seed meal as a substitute for eggs in baking.
Here’s how to substitute flax meal for eggs in any recipe that calls for eggs. If you want to make a different type of pumpkin pie for its health value, you can substitute one tablespoon of flax seed meal mixed with three tablespoons of water and let it stay for two minutes in a cup or bowl to substitute for one egg. Then add this mixture to any recipe that calls for an egg.
To substitute for fat or oil in any recipe, substitute 1/4 cup of mashed or pureed prunes and two tablespoons of lecithin for 1/4 cup of oil in any recipe to substitute for fats. In the recipe below eggs or egg whites can be used. Or you can substitute for eggs with flax seed meal and water for the pie filling. Whole ground flaxseed meal is rich in fiber, lingans, and omega 3 fatty acids.
Flax seed meal has a nutty flavor. Use two tablespoons of flaxseed meal to get a serving of omega 3 fatty acids in your daily diet. Add to cereals, pancakes, pies, or bake into breads and muffins. If you buy flaxseed meal or make your own, keep it in the refrigerator once you open the package or make a fresh batch. You can grind flax seeds in an inexpensive coffee grinder to get a meal consistency. Or use a blender that grinds grain into meal, such as the dry grinding blade attachment of a Vita-Mix.
Most health food stores the natural foods sections of many supermarkets carry packages of flaxseed meal. Compare this healthier pumpkin pie recipe with standard pie recipes found on the backs commercial packages of pumpkin or other foods. Note that a quick pie crust recipe can be made by crushing a box of graham crackers or cinnamon graham crackers with a rolling pin covered with parchment paper.
The graham cracker meal can be moistened with a little olive oil and almond milk and patted around an oiled pie pan for baking. You just pour your pumpkin pie filling over the moistened graham cracker meal and bake until the pumpkin filling is done. But here’s a recipe for making your own crust with flax seed meal and pie filling for Halloween or Thanksgiving using canned pumpkin.
Flax seed crust Pumpkin or Fruit Pie Filling Recipe
The Pie Filling
One 29 ounce can of pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling 3 tablespoons of creamy, raw organic unfiltered honey 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves 1 teaspoon ground ginger 3 eggs or 4 egg whites only 1/4 cup oat bran 1/4 cup golden raisins or other chopped dried fruit such as dates, figs, or dried nectarines. If you like the pie sweeter, add more dried fruit. 1/2 cup almond milk (made by blending 1/2 cup almonds in a quart of water to liquify in your blender).
You can soak the raw almonds in water overnight in a covered jar in your refigerator or just put a few handfuls of raw almonds into your blender and liquefy with a quart of water. Mix all ingredients together. Then pour into a pie crust. Here’s the flax seed meal pie crust recipe. You can use any type of prepared pie crust or make your own from flax seed meal. Or use your favorite recipe. The idea is to substitute healthier ingredients for traditional ones in making the pie crust and the pie filling.
Pie Crust recipe
One cup flax seed meal 1/4 cup olive oil, grapeseed oil, or rice bran oil 1/4 cup almond milk 1/2- 3/4 cup shaved coconut meat to put into the pie 1/2 cup shaved coconut meat with which to line pie pan 1/4 cup sesame seeds Mix the flax seed meal and shaved coconut with 1/4 cup of the oil. Add the almond milk Line a pie pan with 1/4 cup oil.
On top of the oil sprinkle the sesame seeds evenly over the pie plate in which you’ll be baking the pie. On top of the sesame seeds sprinkle a layer of shaved coconut meat.
On top of the coconut meat pour out the pie crust made of the flax seed meal moistened with almond milk and coconut meat, all the spices, and a little olive oil or any other vegetable oil such as grapeseed oil, macadamia nut oil, or rice bran oil that all has been stirred and mixed together to form the pie crust.
Pat the pie crust around the pie dish used for baking the pie. Mix thoroughly so the spices are stirred throughout. The pie plate may be 9 inches round or slightly larger. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees F for about an hour or less if the pie is no longer wet and runny on top when a fork is put into the center of the pie. Cool the pie and serve.
Traditional Pumpkin Pie Recipe Ingredients
If you want a more traditional pumpkin pie recipe, you’ll find it on the label of a can of Libby’s pumpkin, that is, pure, pureed pumpkin with no other added ingredients, not the pumpkin pie filling already mixed. The difference between the commercial recipe for pumpkin pie on the can is that it calls for one and one half cups of sugar and 4 large eggs along with two cans (12 ounces) of evaporated milk to be added to the 29 ounce can of pumpkin and uses two unbaked 9-inch deep dish pie shells.
With the nontraditional recipe, you don’t use sugar. Instead you use either dried fruit as your sweetener with a little honey or just dried fruit, with the sweetness adjusted to your taste without having to put white table sugar into the pie.
Instead of 4 eggs, you can substitute one tablespoon of flax seed meal with three tablespoons of water for each egg called for in any recipe. Or you can use egg whites or three eggs. It’s your choice in the nontraditional recipe.
The spices are the same–2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of ground ginger, and 1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves, in the same amounts, except for the 1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves. The traditional recipe asks you to bake your pie in a preheated oven at 425 degrees F for 15 minutes and then reduce the temperature to 350 degrees F.
Then you bake the pie another 40-50 minutes until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for two hours. Serve right away or put the pie in the refrigerator and keep it cold.
You could also substitute 3 1/2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice for the other spices, but the taste won’t be the same. You might prefer the old fashioned ginger, cloves, and cinammon. Some people also put in 1/8 teaspoon of cardamom into any spice mixture that goes into pumpkin pie filling.
There are the two choices. Which one will be your family’s all-year-round pumpkin or fruit pie treat? Pick the filling recipe you want. At least with the flax seed meal pie crust you get some fiber and omega 3 fatty acids, and the dried fruit will provide something more than the white table sugar. As for the crust, pick what’s healthiest for you.
For more info: browse my books, Neurotechnology with Culinary Memoirs from the Daily Nutrition & Health Reporter (2009). Or browse: How Nutrigenomics Fights Childhood Type 2 Diabetes & Weight Issues (2009) or Predictive Medicine for Rookies (2005). Or see my books, How to Safely Tailor Your Foods, Medicines, & Cosmetics to Your Genes (2003) or How to Interpret Family History & Ancestry DNA Test Results for Beginners (2004) or How to Open DNA-driven Genealogy Reporting & Interpreting Businesses. (2007). Check out my free audio lecture on Internet Archive, How nutrigenomics fights childhood type 2 diabetes.