Friday, September 2, 2011

Deceptively simple and mighty
delicious: Minny's Chocolate Pie

I love recipes that are deceptively simple.
   The ingredient list is short and, for lack of a better word, unremarkable. It’s super easy to make.
   But the result is sensational and delicious.
   This is the case with Minny's Chocolate Pie (click for the recipe) from Food & Wine magazine.
   The recipe was given to the magazine by Greenwood, Miss., newspaper columnist Lee Ann Fleming. Fleming worked as a chef on the set of movie The Help, which was filmed in Greenwood. The chocolate pie is made and served by the character Minny in the movie.
   The pie is made with pre-prepared, store-bought pie dough, sugar, cocoa powder, butter, eggs, evaporated milk, vanilla extract and salt.
   The result is pure magic.
   The pie is smooth, likely due to the evaporated milk, and perfectly chocolately and fudgy from the cocoa powder. It’s very family-friendly.
   I loved the idea that Fleming prefers using a packaged pie dough crust, such as Pillsbury, instead of a homemade crust. Anyone who has struggled with making a pie crust, as I have, will appreciate this.
   The pie crust is put in a nine-inch pie plate, pricked lightly with a fork, lined with foil or parchment paper and filled with pie weights or dried beans. The crust is baked for 15 minutes, then the foil removed and the crust baked for five minutes longer.
   The sugar is whisked with the cocoa powder, butter, eggs, evaporated milk, pure vanilla extract and salt until smooth.
   The filling is poured into the baked pie crust and baked for about 45 minutes. Be careful here, as the recipe is badly written and edited in this step. The edges of the crust that are still showing need to be covered with foil halfway through baking time, something you’re not told about until you’re given a direction on how to know the pie is ready (it’s set around the edges but ever-so-slightly jiggly in the center.)
   Putting foil on the edges of the pie crust was the only tricky part of making the pie, as it was a bit cumbersome to tear up strips of foil and put them on the circular crust.
   The pie is transferred to a rack and left to cool completely.
   It's cut into pieces and served with whipped cream.

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