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CHOCOLATE CREAM PIE

Chocolate cookie crumb crust

• 16 Oreo cookies (with filling), broken into coarse pieces, about 2 1/2 cups

• 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

Chocolate cream filling

• 2 1/2 cups, half and half

• pinch of table salt

• 1/3 cup granulated sugar

• 2 tablespoons of cornstarch

• 6 large egg yolks at room temperature

• 6 tablespoons unsalted butter (cold), cut into 6 pieces

• 6 ounces of semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

• 1 ounce of unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped

• 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

Whipped cream filling

• 1 1/2 cups heavy cream (cold)

• 1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar

• 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract

For the crust: Adjust the oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 350 F. In the bowl of the food processor equipped with a steel blade, process the cookies with 15 pulses of a second, then leave the machine cook until crumbs are evenly fine, about 15 seconds. (You can also place the cookies in a large, zippered plastic bag and crush them with a rolling pin.) Transfer the crumbs to a 9-inch pie plate, drizzle with butter and toss with your fingers until that the butter is evenly distributed.

Press crumbs evenly onto bottom and sides of pie plate. Refrigerate 20 minutes to firm the breadcrumbs, then cook until the breadcrumbs are fragrant and firm, about 10 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack while preparing the filling.

For the garnish: Bring half and half, salt and about 3 tablespoons sugar to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon to dissolve the sugar. Whisk the yolks well in a medium bowl until slightly thickened, about 30 seconds. Combine the remaining sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl, then sprinkle over the yolks and whisk, scraping the sides of the bowl, if necessary, until the mixture is shiny and the sugar has started to set. dissolve, about 1 minute. When half and half reaches full boiling point, drizzle about 1/2 cup of hot half and half over yolks, whisking constantly to cool; then whisk the egg yolk mixture to a simmer half and half (the mixture should thicken in about 30 seconds). Return to a simmer, whisking constantly, until 3 or 4 bubbles burst on the surface and the mixture is thick and shiny, about 15 seconds more.

Off the heat, stir in the butter until incorporated; add chocolates and whisk until melted, scraping bottom of pan with rubber spatula. Stir in the vanilla, then immediately pour the filling into the baked and cooled crust. Press plastic wrap directly onto surface of filling and refrigerate pie until filling is cold and firm, about 3 hours.

For the filling: Just before serving, beat cream, sugar and vanilla in the bowl of a stand mixer on low speed until small bubbles form, about 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium; continue beating until the beaters leave a mark, about 30 seconds more. Increase speed to high; continue beating until cream is smooth, thick and almost doubled in size and forms soft peaks, about 20 seconds. Spread or pour whipped cream over chilled pie filling. Cut the pie into quarters and serve.

Chef’s Notes: Do not mix the yolks and sugar together before making the filling; the sugar will start to denature the yolks and the finished cream will be pitted. Even a tart made with sweet and sour chocolate is pretty sweet – the colossal cloud of whipped cream will make sure that – so I suggest starting there and going semi-sweet if you like.

Source: American test kitchen


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