Lookie here, a bonus Sunday post!
Today I am excited to feature a recipe from the wonderful Shannon, who you may remember from past posts as the brain behind the award-winning vegan chili, and as my assistant during my last vegan cooking class. As usual, Shannon outdid herself with the dessert she brought to share at our 4th of July party. This treat is everything you could want from a summer dessert: fruity, sweet, tart, creamy, and light. It was love at first bite and I asked if she would mind letting me feature it on the blog. Lucky for us, she agreed.
Shannon named this treat the “Whistleblower Wonder” in honor of the “the important work done by patriots Edward Snowden, Bradley Manning, Thomas Drake, and Daniel Ellsberg.” (Like me, Shannon was excited to celebrate the 4th, but not so excited to celebrate America without a healthy side of dissent and critique). Her recipe looks complicated, but it’s so worth it. I hope you’ll give it a try!
Ingredients for red/blue layer:
About 5-6 cups of mixed berries/rhubarb (I used 2 c each organic raspberries & wild blueberries, 1 c each organic strawberries & rhubarb…but any combination will work)
About 1/2 c brown sugar (to taste depending upon the tartness of your ingredients–you want it quite tart, but not sour)
1/3 c corn starch (more or less depending upon how set you like your berries)
Juice and zest of 1 lime
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Pinch of salt
Ingredients for white layer:
32 oz “milk” (I used organic soy milk because I buy it in bulk at Costco and always have it on hand)
6 tbsp corn starch
2/3 c organic sugar (you can use less, but remember that this is meant to contrast the fairly tart berry/rhubarb mix)
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2 -3 organic, fair-trade bananas, sliced
To make your layers:
First, mix together all of the ingredients for the red&blue layer. (Note: my berries were initially frozen but thawed for this recipe…actually this recipe follows a freezer breakdown! I needed to find something to do with all those berries!!)
Bring to the boiling point in a large, heavy-bottomed sauce pan.
Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring regularly, for 10 to 15 minutes, or until thickened and the rhubarb is tender.
Turn off heat and let cool in the pan.
Meanwhile, in a heavy-bottomed sauce pan, mix together the sugar, corn starch and salt for the white layer.
Whisk together until well combined.
Gradually add about a cup of the “milk,” whisking constantly to avoid lumps.
Turn on the heat to medium.
Continue to add the “milk,” whisking constantly. (This part takes a little patience if you want to avoid a lumpy “custard.”)
Cook, stirring constantly, until it barely boils; then reduce the heat to low and keep cooking, stirring constantly, for another 4 or 5 minutes or until it’s thick enough to cling to a spoon.
Remove from heat and stir in the nutmeg and vanilla.
In a large glass casserole (or two! I made a small batch to keep at home and the rest went off to a party), pour the berry mix. If any of the berry mix splashes on the sides, be sure to wipe it down with a damp cloth. Otherwise you won’t have pretty layers of different colors! :)
Next, add the sliced bananas, placing them on top in one layer.
Finally, carefully pour the “custard” over the banana and berry layer, smoothing the surface as you go. Be careful not to mix the layers together!
Cover with plastic wrap or parchment to avoid a skin forming on the custard.
Refrigerate for several hours or until cold and set all the way through.
AND SERVE!! either with coconut “ice cream” or vegan whipped topping of your choice.
(VARIATION: You can also put these layers in a pre-baked whole grain pie crust or graham-cracker crust. It’s super pretty and fun that way. But, of course, it’s also more caloric!)
If you skip the American flag in the background, this is obviously an appropriate treat for any summer event. Hope you enjoy!