On Fridays we’re going to be looking at interesting crusts. To start us off, dessert master Alice Medrich shared her recipe for a pie that has a long name and a mix of flavors and textures. Her Milk Chocolate Pudding Pie with Salted Peanut Crust combines the sweetness and softness of chocolate pudding with the crunch and salt of peanuts. Find more of Medrich’s pies in her new book Sinfully Easy Delicious Desserts and keep reading for her recipe.
Click here to enter YOUR delicious pie (or pies) in the 4th Annual Good Food Pie Contest on Saturday, September 8th at LACMA.
Milk Chocolate Pudding Pie with Salted Peanut Crust
(Excerpted from Sinfully Easy Delicious Desserts by Alice Medrich (Artisan Books). Copyright 2012. )
Serves 8 to 10
For the crust:
¼ cup (1 ounce) salted roasted peanuts (finely ground in a food processor or
crushed in a bag with a rolling pin)
2 tablespoons sugar
¾ cup (2.5 ounces) graham cracker crumbs (finely ground in a food processor)
4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter, melted
3 ounces milk chocolate, finely chopped
For the filling:
3 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably natural
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 cups whole milk
7 ounces milk chocolate, very finely chopped
1 ½ recipes Unsweetened Whipped Cream
A couple of tablespoons of salted roasted peanuts
9-inch pie plate
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F.
To make the crust: Mix the peanuts, sugar, graham cracker crumbs, and butter in a medium bowl until the mixture is evenly moistened. Spread the mixture in the pie plate and use the bottom of a glass or a custard cup to press it evenly and firmly over the bottom and up the sides of the pie plate.
Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until the crust begins to set and colors slightly. If the crust puffs up while baking, press it gently back into place with the back of a fork or the custard cup.
Remove the crust from the oven, sprinkle the chopped chocolate over the bottom, and let the chocolate soften for 1 to 2 minutes. Using a pastry brush or the back of a spoon, spread the chocolate evenly over the bottom and up the sides of the crust. Let cool, then chill the crust until the chocolate sets, about 30 minutes.
To make the filling: Whisk the sugar, cocoa, cornstarch, and salt together in a heavy medium saucepan. Add about 3 tablespoons of the milk and whisk to form a smooth paste. Whisk in the remaining milk. Using a silicone spatula or a wooden spoon, stir the mixture constantly over medium heat, scraping the bottom, sides, and corners of the pan, until the pudding thickens and begins to bubble at the edges, about 5 minutes. Continue to cook and stir for 1 minute, then add the chocolate and stir briskly until the chocolate is melted and the pudding is smooth, about 30 seconds longer. Scrape the hot pudding into the crust and level it with one or two strokes of the spatula. Let cool for 1 hour, then refrigerate the pie. When the filling is cool, cover and chill for at least several hours, or overnight.
Top the pie with dollops or a swirl of the whipped cream, and sprinkle with the peanuts.
Lightly Sweetened Whipped Cream
Makes 2 to 2 ½ cups
1 cup heavy cream
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract (optional)
2 to 3 teaspoons sugar, or more to taste
Using chilled beaters (or a whisk), beat the cream with the vanilla, if using, in a chilled bowl until it holds a soft shape. Gradually add the sugar and beat until it holds a good shape but is not too stiff.