Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Mississippi Mud Pie

So, I lied. I did not post any of the delicious desserts I made as promised last time, but it is not my fault! I have discovered an evil greater than that of hot chocolate chip cookies calling your name straight from the oven: the bar. I'm not talking about lemon bars, or cookie bars, or yummy blackberry pie bars, I'm talking about the big, ugly, California Bar Exam. It has taken over my life! I have not even peeked under the cover of a cookbook for weeks. Luckily, my equally food obsessed friend (you know who you are) managed to (unintentionally) guilt trip me into posting this recipe today. If she can go cheese tasting at Trader Joe's, and can manage to bake from her Cowgirl Cookbook while studying for the bar, then I can at least write about one of the desserts that I promised in my ice cream sandwiches blog post - the one I still reminisce about while I'm eating my preservative-laced, non-homemade (I'm so spoiled!) pepperidge farm cookies in the wasteland of bar study: Mississippi Mud Pie.

This will be a short post, since nearly everything I remember about making the mud pie has been pushed out of my brain and replaced with contracts, property, and torts (not tortes, haha I wish! I'd ace that test). I do remember, however, that this was one of the most delicious custard pies I've ever had or made. Picture creamy, dark chocolate filling, nestled in a crumbly-sweet pate sucree (sorry, I don't know how to add the funny little accents to the "a" and "e's"), and piled high with pillows of freshly whipped cream. Cream pies made with Jello-pudding would taste like old socks next to this one, and seriously aren't that much easier to make. If you make your cream pies with Jello-pudding mix, you are just plain lazy (sorry if I've offended you Jello-pudding fans. I guess it's not your fault that you haven't developed taste buds. It's probably genetic).

Next time you want a Mississippi Mud Pie, put down the Jello-pudding mix, do NOT call Marie Callender's, and instead give this recipe a try! The picture might not look that appetizing, being half eaten and all, but that's only because everyone was too busy devouring to worry about pictures, I swear.

Crust Ingredients (makes 2 crusts unless you tend to eat half of the dough while you cook, like me. You only need one crust for this recipe so freeze the unused dough.)
2.5 c. flour
4T. crisco (vegetable shortening)
pinch of salt
1T. sugar
1.5 sticks of cold cold cold (even frozen) butter
5-6 T. ice water
A bag of beans (for blind baking)

The easiest way to do this is with a food processor. In fact, I won't make pies unless I have a food processor (again, spoiled). Just dump everything except the water in the food processor, and pulse until it forms fine-medium sized crumbs and bits. Then with the food processor running, slowly add the ice water a tablespoon at a time until the dough comes together in a ball. Stop adding water as soon as the dough comes together, or it will be too sticky. You might not use all the water.

Form two equal sized disks with the dough, wrap them in plastic wrap, and stick them in the freezer for 15 minutes, or the fridge for at least 45 minutes. Once the dough has chilled, preheat the oven to 325. Remove the dough from the fridge and roll it out to a size that is a little larger than your pie dish. Dust the rolling surface and the dough with flour as you go to prevent the dough from sticking. Transfer the dough to the pie dish by laying the rolling pin in the center of the dough (dust everything with flour), and folding the dough over the rolling pin on both sides. Lift the rolling pin and put it over the center of the pie dish. Unfold the dough into the pie dish. Don't worry if your crust tears into a bunch of annoying little pieces. Just patch it back together! Remove (eat) the excess dough from the edges.

Because this recipe calls for a custard filling, you must blind bake the dough or it will be soggy and undercooked in the final pie. To blind bake, line the pie dough with parchment paper and pour the beans into the lined crust. Pop the crust in the oven and bake at 325 for about 15-20 minutes, or until the crust is light golden and partially baked. Set aside while you make the filling.

Filling Ingredients
5oz bittersweet chocolate (I used Ghirardelli 60% cocoa chocolate chips)
3.5 T. unsalted butter
2T light corn syrup
6 eggs
1.5 c. packed light brown sugar
1t. vanilla extract

Topping Ingredients
1.5 c. heavy whipping cream
2T. Sugar

Keep the oven at 325. Put the chocolate, butter, and corn syrup in a small saucepan over low heat, and stir continuously until melted and combined. Be really careful not to burn the chocolate, i.e. don't leave the stove and don't stop stirring. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. In a large bowl beat the eggs, sugar, and vanilla until well combined. Very slowly drizzle the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture, beating continuously as you drizzle (if instead you pour a big glob into the eggs, the heat from the chocolate will probably curdle them and you will have Mississippi Scrambled Mud Pie). Once all the chocolate has been added, beat until thoroughly combined. Pour the chocolate batter into the crust and bake for 35-40 minutes. The baked pie should be firm to the touch, but should wobble slightly in the center when you shift the pie plate. Let the pie cool completely, then cover and refrigerate overnight.

When you are ready to serve the pie, make the topping. Pour the whipping cream into a medium bowl and whip until soft peaks form. Add 2T granulated sugar, and beat on low speed for a few more seconds to dissolve the sugar. Mound the whipped cream onto the pie, and serve!


  1. omg omg does this qualify me as a guest blogger?!?! im so excited for the honorable mention that i didn't even finish reading it all the way through :) haha BAR is making me craaaazzzyyyy

    ok now that i've read it through, your pie looks so damn good. i made peanut butter oatmeal cookies the other day....turned out very outmealy if that makes any sense.

    good luck girlie, talk to you soon :)

  2. The pie looks amazing! Good luck on the BAR!