Archive | pie RSS feed for this section

pushing the limits

15 Aug

Have you ever taken a Myer’s-Briggs personality test? I’ve taken the test twice. Once in a communication class in college and the second time was in premarital counseling. The second time I took it, my “type code” was “INFJ”. As far as how I view myself, I would agree completely with this result. These letters stand for Introversion, iNtuiting, Feeling and Judging. According to the report on my particular “judging” characteristic:

“To others, I seem to prefer a planned or orderly way of life, like to have things settled and organized, feel more comfortable when decisions are made, and like to bring life under control as much as possible.”

And for the majority of the time, I would completely agree with this statement about myself. I like things to be organized and for things to go as they were planned. This is not to say that I don’t like surprises, but I prefer that things work out as they should. I don’t like decisions to be hanging in limbo forever. I like to solve problems creatively but I get the task done as it should be. Unless I feel really passionate about a certain something, I usually keep my opinion to myself and try not to rock the boat. This may also be because I avoid confrontation like the plague, but I digress. This is all is true for about 90% of the time, but there are a select few things that “frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.” For these particular things, I don’t even think twice about pushing the limits and hop-skip-jumping over the boundaries.

One of these being the suggested “expired” dates on food.  Suggested, being the key word. Having worked in a grocery store the dates are merely suggestions, believe me. I mean a probiotic won’t kill you one day after the date listed, I promise. And neither will milk. When I used to drink it, I would always drink it after the out of date code. I can think of maybe one time where I kind of wanted to throw up afterwards because it truly was soured. If there is a big piece of mold on some food like bread or cheese, I’ll cut around it. No problem there. When I open a semi-old jar of salsa, applesauce, etc. and find a furry little friend on the top… I’m not going to lie, I completely ignore it and dig in (by strategically pouring or scooping around the little furry guy of course). It doesn’t bother me at all, especially if I really  need that tablespoon of pumpkin to make some cupcakes. If a banana is too mushy to even be peeled, who gives?! Its’ going in my smoothie one way or another. My husband on the other hand…is probably going to have a heart attack when he reads this.

I also really push my car to the limits. I’ve given her a name, Honcha, but besides the doting “pet-name” I’m truly not a good car-owner. This is semi-alright because I rarely use it anymore. But when I do, I will wait until I start sweating from nervousness because I’ve gone 20 miles with the “check gauge” light on and my gas meter line is about to break off before I will pull off at a gas station. I do remember an occasion where I had a couple nails in my tire and it slowly would leak. I didn’t have the cash to buy a new tire, so I kept making stops at my local gas station to fill it up. I am also pretty sure I just went half a year without getting an oil change, let alone adding more engine oil (if my dad were to read this, he would be shaking his head in disgrace, as many of you are… I still remember the first time I ever ran out of gas and he had to bring some to me. He was so mad and lectured me on how I am going to ruin my engine if I continue to do this. Clearly I didn’t follow through with that one because I still wait to the last possible nano-second before I fill up. I’ve also ran out of gas on another occasion, on the way back home from buying my wedding dress; he wasn’t the one I called that time). I push her hard, and luckily this one hasn’t bitten me in the butt, yet.

I also love to push myself when I am working out. I am just like anyone else wherein it takes a lot of encouraging self-talk to actually get me out there and doing it, but when I finally do, I never want to stop. I love feeling the strain in my muscles and the burn in my lungs. I love the euphoria it creates and the extreme sense of accomplishment that comes afterwards. If I didn’t have to work full time or have any other passions in life, I feel as though I would hardly ever leave the gym and may be on the verge of body-building stature.

And occasionally I can borrow elements from a few different confections and push them to the limits to make something other-wordly…

Chocolate-Raspberry Chilled Pie– gluten free, vegan



  • 2/3 c gluten-free flour mix (Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 1/3 c old-fashioned oats (gluten free)
  • 1/4 c granulated sugar
  • 1/4 c brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 c almonds, finely chopped
  • 1/2 c Earth Balance (I use the soy-free kind)


  • 2/3 c raw cashews
  • 2/3 c fresh raspberries
  • 1/3 c coconut oil
  • 1/3 c cocoa powder
  • 1/4 c agave
  • 1/8 tsp salt
Place the cashews in a small bowl or coffee mug. Add enough water to cover the nuts. Place in your refrigerator and let soak for four hours or up to over night.
To make the crust:
Because it has been so hot here lately, my earth balance starts melting immediately coming out of the fridge. It should be cool so I measure it out in a small bowl and put it in the freezer until I am ready to add it.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
I used a removable bottom tart pan, but you could also use a regular pie pan and you should not need to spray it with cooking oil.
In a large bowl or bowl of electric mixer, mix the flour, oats, sugars, baking soda, salt and nuts until well combined. Quickly chop the earth balance into 12 pieces and with the mixer on low speed, add them to the bowl. Let this go until the mixture looks like wet sand, about 2 minutes. Pour the mixture into baking pan and level out the bottom while pushing some of the mixture up the sides to make a crust, like so…

Bake crust for 20 minutes or until light golden brown. If the crust puffs up too much, while the it is still warm, carefully push down the bottom a little to make room for the filling. Let crust cool to room temperature.

For the filling:

Pull your cashews out of the fridge and drain. Place in a high speed blender along with the raspberries, coconut oil, cocoa powder, agave and salt. Blend until completely smooth. When the crust is completely cooled down, pour the filling into the crust. Shimmy and pick up and drop the pan onto the counter to smooth out the top. Place in the fridge until the filling is completely set.

When you’re there, get ready to indulge!


I may need to have many things planned, but I wasn’t planning on this being so good that to get every last drop of the filling out of the Vita-mix, I would be covered up to my elbows in chocolate!

So while you’re making your own pie, I’ll just be eating expired refried beans while trying to bring order to our credit card situation and dreaming about our completely gobbled up chocolate pie!