I've made a couple of different chocolate pies for my monthly pie project -- Chocolate Tart with Gingersnap Crust and Chocolate Cream Pie -- and for my April pie it's chocolate once again.
When I was trying to figure out what pie to make for April, I visited the Four and Twenty Blackbirds site to see what they're making this time of year because they like to bake seasonally. When I saw their Salty Honey pie listed in their spring menu, it got me thinking about salted caramel, which led me to Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Oreo Pie. Salted caramel with dark chocolate ganache on top sounded perfect, but instead I wanted to make a regular pie crust. And instead of using chocolate chips, there was a 2-oz bar of unsweetened chocolate in the pantry needing to be used up, so I substituted the formula in this Giant Chocolate Cake with Bittersweet Chocolate Ganache.
I fell completely in love with this pie on the first bite. It's reminiscent of the Caramel and Shortbread Candy Bars I made for Christmas gifts, but instead of being very sweet it was more rich and smooth (making it my preference between the two). It was not difficult to make -- just took several steps and some waiting.
At some point it would be fun to try a chocolate pie crust with this caramel and chocolate filling.
Adapted from Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Oreo Pie and Giant Chocolate Cake with Bittersweet Chocolate Ganache
- Pie Shell:
- 48 g shortening
- 90 g freshly-milled soft white wheat flour
- 1 tsp granulated sugar
- pinch salt
- 1-2 tbsp ice water Filling:
- 56.7 g (4 tbsp) unsalted butter + 23 g chilled, cubed unsalted butter divided
- 67 g light brown sugar
- 2 tbsp + 1/3 c heavy whipping cream, divided
- sea salt, to taste
- 57 g (2 oz) unsweetened chocolate bar, chopped (I used Guittard)
- 23 g unsalted butter, chilled, cubed
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 67 g granulated sugar
- For crust: stir together the flour, sugar, and salt and dump onto clean bench, placing the chunks of shortening on top. Using the heel of your hand and a bench scraper, smear the shortening into the flour. Work quickly to avoid over-softening the shortening. Once it's irregularly chunky, make a well and add 1 tbsp of the ice water. Mix quickly with fingertips, and add a bit more water if needed. Form into a rough disk shape, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, remove dough and place on well-floured bench. Dust the top of the dough and roll out into a rectangle. Dust off the dough with a pastry brush and fold in thirds like a letter, dusting off each surface. Turn the dough 90° and perform rolling again. Continue this process until it's been rolled out 3-4 times. After final roll, pat corners down to make a disk shape. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare the chocolate ganache: Place the chopped chocolate, 23 g butter, and vanilla in a medium bowl. Bring cream and sugar to boil in a small saucepan, stirring constantly to dissolve sugar. Pour hot cream mixture over the chocolate and let stand 1 min. Whisk until melted and smooth. Set aside to chill while continuing with the rest of the recipe.
- Preheat oven to 425° with rack on bottom.
- Roll out dough, watching that it doesn't stick to the bench or pin, about 2 inches larger than the diameter of the pie dish. Gently place dough in dish, making sure it doesn't stretch or it may split while baking. Since the filling is fairly low, there's no need to go more than 1 1/2 inches up the sides of the pie tin. Keep a little piece of raw dough for patching any cracks that may form during the pre-baking.
- Fill with foil and beans and bake for 15 min. Then remove the beans and foil, prick the bottom of the shell if needed, and bake another 5-10 min. Set aside to cool.
- Prepare the caramel filling: Heat the 56.7 g butter and brown sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat and whisk constantly. Once it bubbles, heat and whisk for 1 min. then remove from heat. Whisk in the 2 tbsp cream and a pinch of sea salt, to taste. Cool for about 15 min, then pour over the prepared crust. Freeze for 15 min.
- Spread the chocolate filling over the chilled caramel, then cover with plastic and refrigerate for a few hours or until form. Serve with some fine sea salt sprinkled over the top if desired.