Passover just ended and what a gluten-free delight that was! Somehow this holiday was the worst to me growing up. Maybe it had something to do with the gefilte fish. Maybe something to do with the prayers that never ended while we attempted to be satiated by sucking on salty parsley or niblets of matzoh and drinking down cups of hideously sweet grape juice. Now though, without the gluten, I’m pretty much kosher for Passover all year but I can’t have the matzoh. Alas, no matzoh brei.
We had a nice dinner at my house this year and my sister made the brisket (we bought 20 pounds from Richardson’s at the Farmers’ Market). I made a few things as well but I think my favorite was indeed the dessert, so I’m starting with that. I really wanted another almond coconut crust and I wanted to further experiment with the one I’d created in February for Tom’s Cherry Pie.
Then Saturday, we had the Green Easter Egg Hunt at the Farmers’ Market and kids could find cascarones and coupons for 1 free strawberry. The best part? When I went to ask the strawberry farmer how it went, he said “we have a flat left of washed strawberries, want em”? Yes sir I took them off his hands. I decided to make a custard with those strawberries (and strawberry sauce and sorbet, soon to come). It took awhile to find something I could adapt for my own, but I found Jam’s Coconut Custard in Pumpkin recipe and decided to work with that as it was naturally gluten and dairy free.
I attempted to arrange the strawberries in a star on the crust, but I didn’t press them down hard enough and I put a ton of custard over them so you couldn’t see them well enough. I’d DEFINITELY do this recipe again. Ooh, also I had some extra custard since I doubled the recipe and I had some leftover white rice. I put rice in a pyrex and poured the remaining custard to cover and baked. It was the best breakfast a girl could ask for.
Almond Coconut Crust (take II)
1 cup blanched almond flour (or buy blanched almonds and grind them in the food processor yourself)
1/2 cup coconut flour
2 Tbsp sugar
3 tsp sweet rice flour
5 Tbsp butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
Blend almonds in cuisinart until they are a fine powder. Add the other dry ingredients and blend until mixed. Add butter and vanilla and cuisinart until just blended. Press into a 9 in pyrex pie pan and put in the freezer for about 20 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 and par-bake for 10 minutes.
1 cup thick coconut cream
1 cup cane juice sugar (any organic brand would do) I felt this a little too sweet, so I’d lessen the amount next time
Heat the coconut cream. When it’s hot, add the sugar and stir until dissolved. Let cool to room temperature (you can arrange the strawberries as described below while waiting for coconut to cool). Beat the eggs and mix into the cream mixture. Strain the mixture through a fine wire mesh colander to smooth out the bubbles.
Quarter or halve strawberries and arrange them on the crust (cut side down) in whatever design you prefer. Press lightly into the crust. Pour custard over strawberries, pressing down any strawberries that float to the surface. Bake in the oven at 325 covered with tin foil for about 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake for another 20-25 minutes or until a knife comes out clean and the custard has puffed up a bit and doesn’t jiggle. This custard is so worth it!