After weeks of pound cakes, I’d had enough of vanilla-flavored desserts. I was in the mood for chocolate! And I wanted to make a chocolate pie, which I had never done before. I wanted something rich and intensely chocolately. I had 6 ounces of unsweetened chocolate, 4 ounces of bittersweet chocolate, and cocoa. (Fun fact: so far, about 10% of the words in this blog post are “chocolate.”) My dairy options were also limited.
Chocolate Mousse Pie is exactly what I was in the mood for, but it didn’t fit my ingredient limitations. (I’m stubborn about extra trips to the grocery store.) I had to settle for Chocolate Cream Pie.
Chocolate cream pie is just pudding in a pie crust. I was starting to get disappointed that I wasn’t going to end up with a dessert as rich as I had originally intended.
I needn’t have worried. This chocolate pie was plenty rich and chocolatey and delicious. See how I’ve nicely spread the filling into the pie shell here? Okay, now look at the edges, and you can see where I took a spoon around the edge of the pie to scoop up some filling. Just to taste, you know? I had to make sure it was edible. I needed several spoonfuls to really make sure.
Oh, it was edible all right. Topped with whipped cream and dusted with cocoa, this definitely fulfilled my chocolate craving.
Chocolate Cream Pie (adapted from epicurious.com and Cooks Illustrated)
8 to 10 servings
Epicurious note: Pie (without topping) can be chilled up to 1 day.
Bridget note: I made the pie on Friday and we finished it on Tuesday, and I didn’t notice any loss of quality over time. I topped each piece with whipped cream as it was served rather than spreading it on the pie. Also, I used 4 ounces semisweet chocolate and 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, plus 2 teaspoons extra sugar.
Chocolate Cookie Crumb Crust
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)
1 tablespoons granulated sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
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, sugar, and vanilla 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.