Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Happy Pie Day!

Well today is National Pie Day and although I didn't get to make a pie, I did want to at least make a post in celebration. My job has been keeping me very busy, but I hope to be making pies and posting more in the near future. In the mean time - go enjoy some pie!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Mimi's Chocolate Pie

Every Christmas my mother's mother - Mimi to us grandkids - would make chocolate pie for the family gathering, and by that I mean ONE chocolate pie. Oh, sure she would probably make a couple of pumpkin pies and perhaps a cherry pie, but one chocolate pie just doesn't seem like enough. Especially when you consider that my grandparents had 7 kids - my mother being the only girl in the middle of 6 boys. And when you start adding in spouses and how ever many grandkids exsisted on that holiday, you see why one chocolate pie was never enough.

I remember my mother telling me about Mimi's chocolate pie and how it was her absolute favorite. "Not too chocolately" mom would say. She would look forward to her mother making one every holiday. Mimi would tell her, "I am making my chocolate pie for you", but as the story goes, with one pie and so many people, she rarely ever got a piece.

A few years before my grandmother passed away I got the chance to ask her for the recipe. I planned on making it for my mom as a suprise. But when I asked Mimi she had to think about it because it only exsisted in her head and then only in approximations of measurements. She gave it a some consideration and finally jotted down the recipe on a 6x4 index card.

Now granted, by the time I came along the days of the big family Christmas were gone, so I'd never tasted Mimi's chocolate pie. I had no idea what, according to my mother, made it so good other than "not too chocolately". But I was determined to make that chocolate pie, and to make it so good it would bring tears of joy to my mother's eyes.

After a couple of attempts I will say that my grandmother approximated well as I haven't had to change the recipe at all. I think the fact that it's so simple is what makes this a brilliant recipe. It's also what makes this pie so good - the custard thickens easily and sets up well, it has great flavor and texture, it's not too rich, and as my mother said, it's not too chocolately. And although my mother's eyes didn't tear up with joy, she did finish her whole piece, and that's good enough for me.

Mimi's Chocolate Pie

3/4 C. Sugar
1/3 C. Flour
2 Tbsp. Cocoa
1/2 tsp. Salt (give or take to taste)
2 C. Milk
2 Eggs
2 Tbsp. Butter
1 tsp. vanilla

Place sugar, flour, cocoa, salt and milk in a pot and heat. Temper in eggs. Return mixture to pot and heat until thickened and coats the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla. Pour into pre-baked pie shell. Top as desired (I suggest sweetened whipped cream).

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Smaller is Better

Small is the new big and it seems like everything is getting smaller. There are small houses, small cars, and even people trying to save small cats. So when I saw this challenge, I thought I'd give it a try with pie and make my Grandmother's chocolate pie recipe - in miniature.

I must say that the mini chocolate pies were a big hit. Merry Christmas Mini Pie Revolution.