Raw Banana Pudding

Raw Banana Pudding with Whipped Coconut Cream and cookies

I discovered the art of making cafeteria food more palatable back in college.  Two desserts of things I like?  Combine them into one.  Banana cream pie and chocolate pudding.  I just like bananas and chocolate together.  So, seeing both desserts on the line one night I picked up both and then dumped the pudding onto the pie.  One of my bosses affectionately started calling it “Moo pie.”

When I moved to the South/Mid-West.  Depending on who you talk to, Kentucky is the South.  Others insist it’s Mid-West.  Whatever.  The point is, the food was vastly different when I moved to Kentucky.  Banana cream pie?  Forget that.  Have some banana pudding loaded with Nilla Wafers and topped with tons of whipped cream.  Okay.

A couple of months ago, Chaz was wanting banana pudding.  I starting thinking.  Yes, I can do it gluten-free, refined sugar-free, and dairy-free.   I CAN DO IT RAW!

I did a few attempts of this before I got it to the point that I liked it.  I was so excited with my final recipe that I was trying to get Chaz to taste it as soon as he woke up.  He  declined.  *sigh*

When he finally tried it, he liked it, but to him it wasn’t enough like “pudding” to him.   It was a few hours after chilling and it actually was set better the next day.

Raw Banana Pudding with Whipped Coconut Cream

3 slightly overripe bananas (the pudding tastes better if they are overripe and not ripe)

1 pint So Delicious Coconut Creamer

1/4 cup pure maple syrup

2 tablespoons agar agar flakes

1 can full fat coconut milk

Optional: Enjoy Life Vanilla Honey Graham Cookies (not refined sugar-free)

Place your full fat coconut milk, mixing bowl and whisk in the freezer while preparing the pudding.  Pour 1/3 of your coconut creamer into your blender and add the agar agar flakes.  Let it sit for 10-15 minutes.  Blend the creamer and the flakes together until smooth.  Add the rest of the coconut creamer, the bananas and maple syrup to the blender and blend again until smooth.  Pour into a 9×9 pan or other serving dish of similar or slightly larger size.  If you choose to use the cookies, layer them at the bottom of the pan/dish and along the sides.  Refrigerate at least 2 hours.  It gets thicker the longer it sets in the fridge.   For the whipped coconut cream, take all the items out of the freezer.  If you are using a stand mixer, put the bowl and the whisk back on the stand.   Open the coconut milk and pour into the mixing bowl.  Whisk on high until the milk is thick and creamy.  Refrigerate.  The whipped coconut cream will thicken up more in the refrigerator, too.

Raw Lavender Blueberry Bars

Raw Lavender Blueberry Bars

I’ve had raw foods on my mind lately.  Not salads and such.  But hearty, wholesome, healthy desserts that can also be a snack or part of a well-rounded breakfast without any of the guilt.  I could say it’s part of thinking ahead to Andrew Wilder’s October Unprocessed event at Eating Rules.  But not really.  It’s more likely related to the fact that I had to give up dairy about a month ago and I’m trying to widen my repertoire even more.

After a few tries, I wound up with these Raw Lavender Blueberry Bars that I was pleased with.  I was eating them for snacks, with breakfast, and as a dessert.  Now, if I could only get the Raw Banana Pudding to come together like it should…

One word of warning, store these uncovered in the fridge.  The condensation from covering it will make the crust soggy.  These will keep for at least a week in the fridge.

Raw Lavender Blueberry Bars

Crust: 2 cups almond meal/flour

1/4 cup coconut oil

1 tablespoon raw local honey, optional (or other sweetener for vegan option)

Filling: 24 ounces blueberries

2 tablespoons raw local honey (or other sweetener for vegan option)

1/2 cup water

1 tablespoon agar agar flakes

1/2 tablespoon lavender, plus more for garnish

Wash blueberries and lay out to dry.   In a small bowl or 1-2 cup glass measuring cup, pour in the water and agar agar.  Mix just a little and set aside.  You want the agar agar to expand quite a bit.  In a medium mixing bowl, add the almond meal, coconut oil, and optional sweetener.  Cut the oil into the almond meal with a fork until small crumbs form.  Transfer the crust mix into an 8 x 8 pan.  Press the crust out to the edges of the dish, then place in the fridge for 15 minutes.  In a large food processor or a blender, place the blueberries, sweetener, and lavender.  Process for at least 30 seconds.  Stop and add the water agar agar mix and then process another 1-2 minutes.  Pour over prepared crust and chill at least 30 minutes.  Cut and serve cold.  Garnish with a pinch of lavender.

This post is linked to Wellness Weekend at Diet, Dessert, and Dogs and Slightly Indulgent Tuesday at Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free.

This post is linked to Friday Foodie Fix at The WHOLE Gang.