Chocolate Silk Pie

  • Downhome Magazine
  • Posted: Jan 25, 2010 4:32 PM
Chocolate and silk. Could two other words spell Valentine's Day any better? Our recipe this month is quintessentially Valentine's. Called Chocolate Silk Pie, it certainly lives up to its name with its silky-smooth, rich chocolate filling baked into a light, flaky pie crust. Our version is made all the more luxurious with the addition of aromatic, locally made Rodrigues Pear Brandy.

Are you dying to make it? Good. Let's get started!

A couple of ground rules before you begin baking. First of all, use premium quality chocolate. (We use high quality Belgian chocolate chips.) The important thing is to be sure you are using pure chocolate, not "chocolate-flavoured chips." Secondly, we love the way the pear brandy adds aromatics but not sweetness to this dessert; however, you could use any flavoured brandy or liqueur you like. If you don't want to use alcohol, even though it does burn off in the cooking, you can skip it.

For the crust, use your favourite pastry recipe or try this quick food-processor method:
2¼ cups all-purpose flour
½ cup cold butter, cut into half-inch cubes (keep cold till ready to use)
½ cup cold margarine, cut into half-inch cubes (keep cold till ready to use)
1 tsp salt
ice water

In a food processor, whiz flour with salt. Drop in butter and margarine. Pulse just a few times to start chopping up the butter. Then through the feed tube, slowly dribble in, while pulsing, 3-4 tbsp ice water. Keep pulsing till pastry comes together into a shaggy ball - but don't over-process, you'll toughen the dough. (You can open the lid partway through the water-adding process to feel how your dough is doing, and adjust by adding more or less water.) Remove from processor - don't knead, just pat it together into a ball. Cut the dough in half and, on a lightly floured board, roll out half the dough to a circle a little larger than your 9" pie plate. Fit the pastry into the pie plate, letting an inch or so of dough hang over. Trim anything longer than an inch and then tuck the edges under and flute with your fingers or press down with a fork. Put this in the fridge to chill. This recipe makes two crusts so you can pat the other half into a disk, wrap with plastic wrap and freeze for later use. (At the restaurant, we fit them in another pie plate and freeze the whole thing. (Chilling pastry makes it nice and flakey!)

While the pastry is chilling, make your filling:
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup butter (not margarine)
1 cup sugar
pinch salt
1 tbsp cocoa
3 eggs
2/3 cup 18% coffee cream
1 oz Rodrigues Pear Brandy (or your favourite brandy or liqueur)

Preheat oven to 350F. Melt the chocolate and butter together in a microwave-safe bowl for about 90 seconds until butter is melted. Stir until smooth. Whisk in remaining ingredients until well blended. Pour into chilled crust and bake for 30 min. until filling has begun to puff. Centre might still be jiggly. \Don't worry if it cracks a little.

Chill in fridge to set. Cut into 8 slices and serve with whipped cream. (Or, skip dinner and just get two forks! Have fun - it's the month for romance!)

Cory Way