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La Belle Cuisine - More Pie Recipes

Fine Cuisine with Art Infusion

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White Chocolate-Coconut Cream Pie



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Barefoot Contessa Pantry – Gourmet Foods for All Occasions

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On the farm, pie is the great common denominator."

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La Belle Cuisine


White Chocolate-Coconut Cream Pie

Chocolate American Style

Copyright © 2004 by Lora Brody
Clarkson Potter/Publishers


Makes one 9-inch pie

“I’ve always been a huge fan of the circular, many-tiered rotating glass
showcases that feature prominently in the entryway of many delis and coffee
shops. Lacking one of those, a glass- or plastic-domed pie stand sitting right
on the counter is a pretty good second choice. One of the things I look for
when judging the quality of an eatery is the presence of coconut cream pie,
which is a clear indication that someone back there cares about serving a
great dessert. The version in the revolving cases usually features a creamy,
light coconut custard resting in a flaky crust, all topped with mounds of
whipped cream. This version improves on the former, with its cookie crust
and toasted coconut garnish. And the whipped cream? It’s in the filling!”

For the crust
5 ounces (40 cookies) vanilla wafer
cookies, crumbled
6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted
butter, melted
1/4 cup (2 ounces) sugar

For the filling
1/2 cup (4 ounces) sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups (16 ounces) heavy cream
1/2 cup (4 ounces) unsweetened
coconut milk
3 extra-large egg yolks
4 ounces white chocolate,
coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups (5 ounces) sweetened
shredded coconut, toasted*

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F with the rack in the center position.
To make the crust, place the crumbled cookies in the work bowl of a
food processor fitted with the metal blade. Pulse until the cookie pieces
are reduced to small crumbs, then add the melted butter and sugar.
Pulse until the butter is evenly dispersed among the crumbs. Press the
crust mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate.
Bake the crust for 18 to 20 minutes, or until it is fragrant and light
brown, and it is slightly firm to the touch. Remove the plate to a wire
rack to cool. Turn off the oven. (The crust can be made up to 2 days
ahead. Cover well with plastic wrap and store at room temperature.)
To make the filling, combine the sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a 2-quart, heavy saucepan. Whisk the mixture together, then whisk in 1 cup of the cream and the coconut milk. Add the egg yolks and whisk vigorously to combine. Set the saucepan over medium heat. Stir or whisk constantly, making sure to reach into the corners of the pan, as the mixture thickens
and comes to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat and stir or whisk the mixture very well, then return the pan to the heat. Simmer the mixture, whisking constantly, for 1 minute. Remove the custard from the heat and
stir in the white chocolate and vanilla. Stir until the chocolate melts. The mixture will be very thick and slightly oily looking. Transfer the mixture
to a large metal bowl, press a piece of plastic wrap onto the top, and refrigerate until cold.
When the custard is cold, beat it with an electric mixer on high speed for
1 minute, until it is smooth. Add the remaining 1 cup of heavy cream
and beat on high speed until the mixture is thick and fluffy like whipped cream. Fold in 1 cup of the toasted coconut. Pour and scrape the filling
into the prepared crust. Sprinkle the top with the remaining 1/4 cup
toasted coconut. Refrigerate the pie until ready to serve.
The pie can be stored in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 4 days.

*To toast coconut in the oven, spread it on a shallow, rimmed baking sheet and place
it in a preheated 350-degree F oven for 10 minutes. Use a metal spatula to stir the
shreds, then bake for another 5 minutes, or until the coconut is a very light
golden brown.
To toast coconut on the stove top, place it in a large nonstick skillet and cook over
medium heat, shaking the pan or stirring continuously with a wooden spoon until the
shreds turn light golden brown. This will take 10 to 15 minutes, depending on how
much coconut you are toasting.

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