Wedding pies, starry skies

Whoops, been a while. Let’s detour around the me-begging-for-forgiveness part and get right to the you-forgiving-me part. Aw, thanks for forgiving me! You are also quite attractive. I like that thing you do. It’s good!

So my future-sister and I decided to bake pies for my current-and-always-sister’s wedding. It was ambitious of us, and did not bring out the best in me. It may or may not have resulted in a pie, face down, on the kitchen floor. I shed some tears, though they were in private. I also had a huge deadline at work and literally was on my computer as the hair stylist sprayed me with hairspray. I also decided, at the 11th hour, to bake a wedding cake, because I think there is actually something clinically wrong with me. I don’t understand my limits, and I push them, and then pies die by the cold face of kitchen tile.

But I mean otherwise, like 20 pies got made (with some delicious fruit pies thrown into the mix by Julia’s friend R), and a wedding cake got slapped together, and the wedding went off without a hitch. Or, should I say, WITH a hitch! Ha ha! Ha!

I could wax poetic about the wedding. It was magical–parades, yard games, pig roast, drinking, dancing, bonfire singalong, sleeping under the stars, all in a little redwood grove in the Santa Cruz mountains–but I sense you are already pissed at me, so why add envy on top of that? Just know, aside from any pie success, it was a good night. It was a good good good good night.

This chocolate cream pie was the star, and I can’t take credit for the making of it. Future-sister Katie nailed it! You should nail it too, and then someone you love. Or don’t love. I ain’t gonna judge you, baby!

Chocolate Cream Pie
via TWTCC adapted from epicurious.com and Cooks Illustrated)

8 to 10 servings

Epicurious note: Pie (without topping) can be chilled up to 1 day.

Chocolate Cookie Crumb Crust (I used a regular pie crust, it worked)
16 Oreo cookies (with filling), broken into rough pieces, about 2½ cups
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

Chocolate Cream Filling
2/3 cup sugar
¼ cup cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt
4 large egg yolks
3 cups whole milk
5 oz fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), melted
2 oz unsweetened chocolate, melted
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla

Whipped Cream Topping
1 cups heavy cream (cold)
You can also add 1 tbsp sugar and some vanilla but I took it out because I think it’s too much.

1. For the Crust: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. In bowl of food processor fitted with steel blade, process cookies with 15 one-second pulses, then let machine run until crumbs are uniformly fine, about 15 seconds. (Alternatively, place cookies in large zipper-lock plastic bag and crush with rolling pin.) Transfer crumbs to medium bowl, drizzle with butter, and use fingers to combine until butter is evenly distributed.

2. Pour crumbs into 9-inch Pyrex pie plate. Following illustration below, press crumbs evenly onto bottom and up sides of pie plate. Refrigerate lined pie plate 20 minutes to firm crumbs, then bake until crumbs are fragrant and set, about 10 minutes. Cool on wire rack while preparing filling.

3. For the filling: Whisk together sugar, cornstarch, salt, and yolks in a 3-quart heavy saucepan until combined well, then add milk in a stream, whisking. Bring to a boil over moderate heat, whisking, then reduce heat and simmer, whisking, 1 minute (filling will be thick).

4. Force filling through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, then whisk in chocolates, butter, and vanilla. Cover surface of filling with a plastic wrap and cool completely, about 2 hours.

5. Spoon filling into crust and chill pie, loosely covered, at least 6 hours.

6. For the topping: Just before serving, beat cream in bowl of standing mixer on low speed until small bubbles form, about 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium; continue beating until beaters leave a trail, about 30 seconds more. Increase speed to high; continue beating until cream is smooth, thick, and nearly doubled in volume and forms soft peaks, about 20 seconds. Spread or pipe whipped cream over chilled pie filling. Cut pie into wedges and serve.

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2 thoughts on “Wedding pies, starry skies

  1. Your pies (and dancing) were amazing, and I for one am glad you over committed and made the wedding cake, because I might have liked that even better than the pie(s)… hard to say, really.

  2. Pies were amazing!!! And the cake left me wanting the recipe; still do, even knowing what all went into it!

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