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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Mississippi Mud Pie

This type of pie was new to me. I will confess, since I've never made anything like this before, I ended up failing on the first attempt. I apparently didn't let it cook long enough after adding the egg yolks so the filling didn't set and it ended up being more like a loose pudding than a pie. Don't get me wrong, it still tasted really good, but I was embarrassed when I brought it to the dinner party we went to.... The second one, however, did turn out nicely. It is the one pictured. This is a dessert to impress for sure!

What you will need:

For the crust:

25 chocolate wafer cookies (6 ounces) broken into pieces, or 1 1/2 cups wafer cookie crumbs (I ended up using chocolate graham crackers because I could find any chocolate wafer cookies anywhere)
1/2 cup pecan halves
4 tablespoons melted unsalted butter

For the filling:

2/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups milk
4 large egg yolks
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

For the topping:

1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
coarsely chopped pecans, for garnish

Make the crust first:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
In a food processor, grind the wafers and pecans until fine crumbs form. Add melted butter and process till combined. Press mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Refrigerate till firm, about 15 minutes. Bake 8-10 minutes; transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely. 

Now make the filling:

Combine the sugar, cocoa, cornstarch and salt in a medium saucepan. Slowly whisk in milk (it helps if all these ingredients are at room temperature). Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until bubbling and thick, about 7 minutes (about 2 minutes after it comes to a boil).

Whisk egg yolks in a medium bowl until combined. Whisk in milk mixture in a slow, steady stream until completely incorporated (it may be easier if someone helps you with this part). Return mixture to saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly just until it returns to a boil, 1 to 2 minutes (this is where I failed the first time, so make sure you let it cook long enough). Pour the mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl. Stir in vanilla and butter, 1 piece at a time, until completely smooth.

Pour the filling into the crust. Press plastic wrap directly on the surface of the custard; refrigerate for 4 hours or up to 1 day. 

Make the topping:

Just before serving, in a chilled bowl, beat cream, sugar and vanilla until soft peaks form. Spread whipped cream over pie and sprinkle with the pecans.

Enjoy :)