Strawberry Pie and Consistency…
With local, organic strawberries coming into season, I am really missing the homemade strawberry pie I used to always make, before going Paleo. The recipe I use is definitely not Paleo, as it has a flour-crust and uses Sure Jell to thicken it, along with cornstarch and sugar. I tried making something out of just strawberries and baking it, but it was a goupy mess and tasted as though I'd heated up a jar of jam and served it! Any ideas?
One thing that always strikes a chord with me is the number of questions I get, asking about how to 'thicken' things, from soups & stews to a fruit pie. If you really 'think outside the box', ponder why we feel the need to 'thicken' things in the first place?
In the case of stews and soups, I always recommend readers simply use reduction as a method to warrant a thicker finished product, versus adding some kind of flour, even if it is a nut based 'flour'. (In cooking, reduction is the process of thickening or intensifying the flavor of a liquid mixture such as a soup, sauce, wine, or juice by boiling liquid (such as stock or wine) rapidly until the volume desired is reached by evaporation.)
For the fruit pie example, while I must admit that the slice of pie above looks prettier than the gooey mess you mentioned, if we consider a simpler approach and just serve…fruit, it's not only healthier (as all fruits and veggies are in their raw state) and closer to our Paleo roots but can be equally as enjoyable, without the negative ramifications one might feel, had they ingested flour, dairy and cornstarch.
Regardless of where you live, or what time of year it is, choose whichever fruit is local, and preferably organic and capitalize on it.
An East Coast Autumn yields a plethora of apples to pick from, with which you can prep Paleo baked apples (core, stuff with walnuts and a few raisins, sprinkle on some cinnamon and bake in water). Springtime in the South produces lovely peaches; make a homemade sorbet (or granita if you don't own an 'ice-cream' maker) without the need for any added sugar. Or, summer in California, where we are fortunate to have access to loads of options, which we can literally mix and match, chop up and combine, drizzle with lemon juice and mint and serve a lovely bowl of fruit… all without using processed foodstuffs like 'Sure Jell' or 'thickeners'.