Saturday, April 27, 2013

It Started with Samoas

In the wake of last weekend's successful citrus pie, I asked younger son if there were a type of pie he wanted me to make this weekend. On the back of last week's recipe, he scrawled "coconut cream pie (a bit crunchy, if possible) w/ chocolate chips + chocolate drizzle on top w/ caramel+ pretzel crust (possibly w/ a bit of plain graham cracker in the crust, too)." He then verbally added, "Samoa in pie form." In researching the exact composition of samoas, I discovered the recipe for a Samoa Pie. This made it entirely too easy, so I decided instead to create a pie from the scrawled instructions as well as the email amendment that the crust be "as thick as the one on last week's pie." I have apparently succeeded, though it took bits and pieces of six different recipes to do so.

First up, caramel sauce and toasted coconut. I made the caramel sauce last night and am desperately hoping that younger son takes it home with him tomorrow. I have a love-hate relationship with caramel. I love eating it and hate that it is basically made from sugar, butter, and cream.
Next up, the crust. I started with biscotti for the caramel that younger son requested, and added some crushed pretzels and graham crackers. For sugar, I used powdered instead of granulated and guessed at the amount of melted butter needed. Actually, I guessed at all the amounts with the aim of making the requested thick crust.
Here's the baked result. You can't really see it here, but it is thick.
For the coconut cream part, I used a recipe that did not call for the double boiler I would have had to improvise. The recipe didn't specify sweetened or unsweetened coconut. I used unsweetened since that was what I had left over from making granola. As with last week's citrus pie, the amount of filling wasn't quite as much as I might have liked. Instead of hiding that fact with whipped cream, I sprinkled the top with toasted coconut. First, though, I made a circle of caramel sauce around the outside, letting it seep down a bit between the coconut cream filling and crust. On the top I drizzled melted chocolate chips and sprinkled some mini chips. The end result? The art of pie in more ways than one.
Younger son has indicated that I met his challenge quite handily. In fact, I expect that by morning the pie will be but a pleasant memory.

Next up? There's a recipe for cinnamon roll swirl cake that looks promising not to mention quicker and easier than the homemade cinnamon rolls that are part of our Christmas morning routine.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Bill Smith Makes a Mean Pie

A friend sent me the link to an NPR story, "A North Carolina Pie That Elicits an 'Oh My God' Response" that included the recipe for Bill Smith's Atlantic Beach Pie. I don't know who this Bill Smith is, but he has a mean pie recipe that starts with, interestingly enough, a crust made of saltine crackers.

The filling is made with lemon juice, lime juice, or a mixture of the two. I used a mixture. The filling also contains condensed milk. In my opinion, it is hard to go wrong with condensed milk unless you consider the 14-ounce can to be the single serving size.
The amount of filling that the recipe yielded actually looked a bit skimpy when added to the saltine crust. A top layer of whipped cream solved that problem. Younger son, he of the New Year's resolution to "eat pie" judged it to be a winner.

Monday, April 15, 2013

More Mocha

Older son had asked for a mocha pie and would have gotten the most recent one had our karate instructor not been there to get the one I made earlier in the week. So I made another one on Saturday. It didn't last very long, only until Sunday night. Coming soon to a kitchen near me will be a citrus pie with a saltine cracker crust. A friend heard it mentioned in an NPR broadcast and sent me the link to the recipe. A saltine cracker crust ... intriguing.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Gifting Pies

It's much easier to gift a pie using a pie carrier. The pie inside the carrier shown above was a mocha pie taken to one of our karate master instructors. I normally give him a pumpkin pie, but when I learned he might like a mocha pie, did one of those instead. I'll find out tomorrow what he thought of it.