The results are in! Over 60% of polled readers said their guilty pleasure is definitely chocolate. Of course it is. Every Mom should have a secret stash of chocolate in her house for emergencies. I usually keep a good bar of dark chocolate in the fridge and try to avoid stocking other chocolate treats in the house simply because I cannot be trusted. Recently I started buying boxes of those miniature chocolate chip cookies, thinking because they are minis I can eat more and not stuff myself. I ate them like chips. Or popcorn. I ate them by the handful. So then I decided to make my own chocolate chip cookies, again in miniature form, to have around the house as a special treat. I’d limit myself to one a day. I baked over two dozen one afternoon. Devoured in a weekend. Not cool, man.
I brought this Chocolate Pudding pie to a Purim bar-b-q hosted by a friend of mine. On the holiday of Purim we eat, drink and generally be merry, give gifts of food and drink, spread the wealth around to those less fortunate, disguise ourselves in costumes and listen twice to the Purim story of how Queen Esther and Mordechai the Jew saved the Jewish people. By the time dessert rolls around everyone is so tipsy no one cares what you serve them- this pie is the exception. There were ooohs. And aaaahs. People asked for seconds. It’s dairy-free and darn good.
Chocolate Pudding Pie
Adapted from The Williams-Sonoma Baking Book
1 cookie crumb crust (I used a Keebler graham cracker crust, but you can easily make your own)
For the Filling:
2 1/2 cups soy milk
150 grams semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
4 large egg yolks
3/4 cup sugar
3 tbsp cornstarch (cornflour)
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
For the Topping:
1 cup parve heavy cream (I used Rich’s Whip)
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Finely chopped chocolate for garnish
In a saucepan over low heat, combine the soy milk and finely chopped chocolate and stir until the chocolate is completely melted. Turn off the heat. In a large bowl whisk egg yolks with sugar until pale yellow in color. Add cornstarch, salt, and vanilla extract and beat for 1 minute. In small batches, slowly pour the melted chocolate into the egg mixture, mixing well in between additions. Do not pour in all at once or the eggs will cook and your custard will be ruined. Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thickened. About 5-10 minutes. Whisk until completely smooth. At this point you have the perfect chocolate pudding. Feel free to forgo the pie and eat with a spoon. If you decide to proceed, pour the pudding into the pie crust until it almost reaches the top. There might be a bit of pudding left over. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the pie and refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours before serving. In the bowl of an electric mixer (or a stainless steel mixing bowl) combine parve whipping cream, remaining 1 tbsp sugar and 1 tsp vanilla extract. Whip on medium-high with the whisk attachment (or with a wire whisk if by hand) until stiff peaks form, about 3-5 minutes. You can tell a stiff peak if when you remove the whisk from the bowl, a peak of cream remains standing and doesn’t fold over. Remove plastic from the chilled pie and spoon whipped cream onto the top, smoothing the surface. You can dust with finely chopped chocolate for a garnish. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve. You can also place in the freezer for a few minutes to firm before serving.