I made the mistake of gesturing toward the Vegan Pie in the Sky book on my counter. This caused someone to ask about the vegan nature of the recipe. My hand was forced. I had to confess that they had just eaten tofu. Everyone groaned. Even the people who will eat tofu in main meals were disgusted that I had used tofu in the pie. Those that don’t eat tofu were “grossed out.” This was my 12-year old-boy.
Nevertheless, everyone continued eating the pie with my son’s demand that we “stop talking about the tofu!”
My next attempt was the Vegan Pie in the Sky Coconut Cream Pie. I had to try it because the picture in the book was gorgeous. Again, the recipe was very easy to follow as long as you had all of the ingredients. If you’ve never cooked this way before, you will need a lot of ingredients you probably do not have in your house. The first shopping trip will be expensive. The fifth trip to the store will be frustrating. I went to five different stores to find agar powder. There are two pages in the cookbook dedicated to agar. Agar is a seaweed-based gelatin needed to, obviously, gel your pies. I could not find agar anywhere. There were no Asian markets within a 45-minute radius of me so I substituted the horse-hoof-infested regular gelatin. Hey, I’m not vegan. I read that you can use a substitute in equal parts. I caution anyone trying to substitute the agar that you need more gelatin than agar powder.
My coconut pie never gelled. I was going to call it coconut soup and serve it for dinner when my son, (“There’s no tofu in this right?”) told me to put it in the freezer. That might seem obvious to some, but I hadn’t considered it.