Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Chipped Chocolate Pie

My contribution to Thanksgiving dinner was a pie. Not just any pie. I wanted to make the pie that Grammie was known for. I think it may even date back to Great Grandmother. I asked my cousin, The Muffin Man, and while he didn't have the exact recipe right at hand he found something damn close. And since it's damn close instead of the actual recipe I have no qualms about passing it on to you.

It's called a Chipped Chocolate Pie. This is different from a chocolate chip pie in that two of the words are switched. Also, you're supposed to shave your own chocolate instead of using a bag of chips.

You're gonna need:
16 graham crackers, crushed
1/3 cup butter
30 large marshmallows
1 cup heavy whipping cream - Whipped
1/4 cup hot milk
1/2 (1 ounce) square semisweet chocolate, grated

The crust
I haven't made a graham cracker crust before, but I wanted to try my hand at it rather than just buy one at the store. Set aside 2 tablespoons of smashed cracker to put on the top of the pie later. Mix the rest in with the melted 1/3 cup of butter. At first you'll have some really buttery crumbs and lots of not at all buttery crumbs, but just keep stirring and it'll even out. The butter serves to help make the cracker crumbs sculptable. Then line the pie pan with the buttery crumbs. They don't pack well. Not by hand. My brother says I should have used a second pie pan to pack the crust better. Even if you don't it'll be fine. Mostly you're just wanting something to make sure the pie filling comes away from the pan.

The filling
You do have a double boiler, right? Yeah, me either. Just put one pan inside a bigger pan and fill the space between with water. You'll be fine.
Inside the smaller pan you need to put the 30 marshmallows and the milk. This should leave you enough marshmallows in the bag to snack on or pay off nosy family members. Keep an eye on this so it doesn't go horribly wrong, but you can go work on the next parts while this is happening. Just come back to stir every little bit.
I had the problem that I didn't wait long enough. I thought it was melted, but still had small bits of unmelted marshmallow in there. It doesn't really affect the flavor, but your final pie will have lumps of white in it.

Use a cheese grater to grate the chocolate. Here, use one of mine. Somehow, I have four of them now.
Be sure to grate it all. Expect to leave some knuckle in there.

If you can, let the whipping cream get well chilled. Mine sat in the fridge overnight and seemed to be alright. Some say the colder you get it the better it will whip. I don't have a blender or a whisk so I used a fork. Then I just went to town on the whipping cream. I don't know how long I whipped exactly, but about as long as it took to melt the marshmallows. It wasn't a great whipping job, but it was foamy enough for my tastes.

You're supposed to let the marshmallows cool for a little while. Another mistake was not letting the molten marshmallows cool enough. I just dumped the chocolate shavings and whipped cream into the white goop right after it came out of the boiler. The instructions said fold it in. That's another word for stir, right? Anyway, I'm used to seeing this pie with black speckles from the chocolate shavings remaining more or less intact. That's not what I got. They melted in the hot marshmallows and turned the very white pie brown. Flavorwise, that's not a problem. It's just not how I expect it to look.

Pour all that in the pie pan.
Sprinkle the graham cracker crumbs you set aside on top of the filling.
Throw that mess into the fridge for a few hours. Preferably overnight.

Since my crust wasn't well made the edges fell apart during transport and left the top of the pie with a lot more than the 2 tablespoons of graham cracker crumbs. In fact, it was almost completely crumb encrusted. Not a problem, just not how it's supposed to look.

The pie was a success. It always is. At the family gatherings we have to cut it thin to make sure as many people as possible get some. Yummy's family gathering wasn't as big and nobody knew about the pie yet so I think I had the biggest piece of this stuff I've ever had. It was damn good. Everyone loved it. Many of those who decided against a piece were fed bites from their spouse's piece. I'm calling that a success.

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