Abby's Coconut Cream Pie (Gluten Free Option)

There are a few dear people in my life who have a passion for all thing coconut.  I appreciate them. 
Recently I made this for my lovely and very pregnant gluten free friend.  It was a hit.  I'm not saying she hid it from her husband in order to eat more...I am only saying she thought about it.
Traditionally this pie would be served in a pastry crust, but I find I prefer the flavors of a graham cracker crust with my coconut anything!  The flavors compliment each other well.
Instead of only using milk in the custard filling, I use coconut milk and regular milk.  This most definitely enhances the coconut flavor and can be quite strong.  If your not that daring, you can use only plain ol' cows milk.
I am going to give you two options for the crust, gluten free and regular, but the filling remains simple and elegant no matter what crust you put it on.

Abby's Coconut Cream Pie
yield: 1 pie | Prep Time: 40 minutes | Total Time: 3 hours

Ingredients for graham cracker crust:
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs (this equates to about 15 graham crackers)
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 4 oz. butter, melted
  • 1 tsp. vanilla 
Directions:  Combine dry ingredients in bowl and drizzle with melted butter and vanilla.  Stir to fully combine.  Mixture should be wet but not soggy and able to stick together when pressed.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for 8 minutes then put aside to cool.

Ingredients for Gluten Free "Graham Cracker" Crust:
  • 1 cup gluten free cracker (think something like a saltine)
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 4 oz. butter, melted
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
 Directions:  Combine dry ingredients in bowl and drizzle with melted butter and vanilla.  Stir to fully combine.  Mixture should be wet but not soggy and able to stick together when pressed.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for 8 minutes then put aside to cool. 

Ingredient for coconut custard:
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch or arrowroot powder
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 cups (canned) coconut milk
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 oz. butter
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded coconut (unsweetened) 
Ingredients for Topping:
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup shredded coconut, toasted
Directions:  Whisk the yolks separately and put aside.  In a pan, stir together cornstarch, sugar and salt. Add both milks, adding while slowly whisking to avoid clumps from the cornstarch.  Let mixture just come to a boil over med-high heat then remove from heat.
Now we want to temper our yolks, take about a cup of the milk mixture and slowly add to the egg yolks, whisking away while you do.  This will prevent your yokes from turning into scrambled eggs by slowly raising the temperature of the eggs.  Once you have done that, slowly mix the eggs into the remaining milk and combine.
Turn the heat back on and bring to a boil for 2 minutes.  It will start to thicken quite a bit.  Add vanilla and butter and whisk in.  Remove from heat and let cool for about a half hour, stirring every few minutes to prevent a film from forming on the top.
Add to pie crust and top with plastic wrap before popping it in the fridge for 2 hours.  (the plastic is to prevent a film again).

Directions for Topping:  Put cream in slightly chilled bowl and whisk for 1 minute.  Slowly add the sugar as you continue to whisk it, then add the vanilla.  Whisk until mixture peaks and ten whisk for about 10 more seconds, you are looking for a firm peak.

Putting It All Together:  Once custard is cool enough to add topping without melting it, you can put it on.  Sprinkle with toasted coconut.

Toasting Coconut:  Instead of toasting shredded coconut in the oven (because I always seem to forget about it and end up with burnt coconut)  I like to do it on the stove top.  Dry pan, high heat and constant stirring.


Welcome To The New Opal & Rouge (and a giveaway!)

I would like to introduce you to the new and improved Opal & Rouge!
I look forward to sharing all sorts good eats with you guys!  I am so very excited about this new venture of food indulgence.  It has long been such a passion of mine, it seems only natural that I share even more of this passion with you.

I love to cook, to bake, to create in the kitchen.  Its what I do when I am happy, its what I do when I am sad, it is the best way of relaxation for me.  I lose myself when I am in the kitchen, watching things come together...discovering new and interesting things...either by design or accident!

I certainly hope that you enjoy these recipes, and I hope that you use them, share them, and love them in your own kitchen.  That would be the greatest compliment, by far, that you could pay me!

In an effort to delve into this new blogging arena (for me), I have been attending some local food related blogger events.  For some reason I haven't made it to many of these things in the past, but now it a time for change.  Whole foods asked me to come to a wine tasting event that they were hosting, I gladly went!  Not only did they give me wine to drink (fyi, Malbec may be a new favorite of mine!) but they also wanted you guys to have a little something!

So, consider this giveaway a thank you for sticking around, and a bribe to stay even longer!  If you win, you can buy some of the  ingredients to make one of my recipes, how about that?

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This past week Opal + Rouge turned 2.
This also means that I have been mommy blogging for 5 years now.
There have been a few different blogs and a few different names, but I have been plugging along.  I've met beautiful people and shared stories and commonalities with many people.  I've loved it.
I want to say thank you for reading, contributing and subscribing for the last few years.  Even though I would still write if no one read it, it's nice to know that people do!  You have laughed and cried along with me, you have been my support and times and my refreshed point of view at others.  
Thank you for walking along side of me during this journey into motherhood.

Over the last few months I have struggled with where to take the blog next.  Though I love to write about my kids, I felt spend in doing so.  I am no longer a new mother and feeling like my post are becoming redundant.  Perhaps I have lost the vision I once had...or perhaps it really is time for a change.  

I definitely am not suggesting that I am going to quit blogging all together, I love and share on o+p!  But it's time to shake it up, to change.  I've changed over the last 5 years and it's only fitting that my blog does too.  And though my family and I will continue to go to parks, make things, have birthdays and, in general, go on living don't really need to know every detail.

Over the next few weeks Opal + Rouge will be going through some serious changes and will be transitioned into (drum roll please...) a food blog.  All of you know I'm a foodie, and it only seems fitting to focus on the area that I am truly passionate about.  Along with recipes and general food DIY I will also continue the oh Hello Portland spotlight so we can showcase all the yum that portland has to offer ( and why don't we add a few more cities while we are at it).  I'm excited to see what it can turn into and I very much hope that you will stick around for the journey.

Please be patient with the transition, though I am relinquishing the title of mommy blogger....I am still a mommy, and these precious little humans take time to grow.

All my love, 

Growing Food | Progress

All but one of our garden beds are in.  It already makes the back yard look so much better, which is pretty bad since its only just dirt and wood.  Perhaps I am just envisioning what it will look like in a few short months, not sure.

Now to decide what to grow!  When to start.  If is should start my seedling inside or not.
So PNW growers, any tried and true methods I just have to know about?  I grew up growing things further inland in a drier climate and am having to adjust what I know.

(not your mama's) Brussel Sprouts

Brussel Sprouts get a bad wrap.
No one likes them, or no one gives them a try.  People, they are adorable.
Years ago, I taught a culinary class to grade school and high school students.  The majority of time in the class was spent trying to get the students to actually TRY the food they made.
The high schoolers were the worst.  I told the students I would pass them if they did two things, they had to participate and they had to try everything.  Most of the students found that something they absolutely hated they suddenly liked! I explained it depend a lot that  HOW something is prepared is just as important as what the item actually is.
Anyway, back to the point.  Brussel Sprouts.
Try em this way...I promise you a different view.

Brussel Sprouts

  • 1 lb brussel sprouts
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp sherry
  • 4 oz. grated Parmesan cheese

To Make: Wash those sprouts well.  Cut of the little nub on the bottom, this will likely remove two or three of the outer leaves.  Slice them in half.
Break out that trusty cast iron skillet (or any old casserole dish) and lay them in there. Toss with oil and sherry, and cook on med/high heat for about 5 minutes, this will cook the sherry off.  
 (If, indeed, you do use sherry or any other alcohol, beware of flames.  This is great and totally normal...but it can be surprising if you are not expecting it.  They will cook down quickly though.)
Place in oven at 400 degrees for around 30 minutes or until soft.
Sprinkle with cheese and serve.


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