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Sunday, February 17, 2008

Self-Indulgent Banana Cream Pie to Evoke My Dreams - SHF


This month's Sugar High Friday hosted by Rachel over at Vampituity was inspired by the movie, "Waitress." I actually did see this movie recently. The reason I rented it was because (1) Keri Russell is just a cute actress who is fun to watch and (2) hello, she was making pies. Her pies were always inspired by something and so for this month's SHF I was inspired to go outside my comfort zone and make a pie I've never made before. Actually, it wasn't a recipe for pie at all, just something I thought would work together. Now, I should mention here, that pretty much as a rule, I have never been a big fan of baked fruit in general. So, a cream pie was the way to go for me.

This pie, while dreamy, would definately NEVER classify in any way, shape or form as being anything but rich and, well, self-indulgent. Thus the name I settled on. In the movie, whenever Keri's character is imagining a new pie she makes it while she is describing it in her head. So, in honor of the movie here you go (just try to imagine a Southern Belle accent for me here and lots of gratuitous shots of the pie being made).

"I'm making a pie. Self-Indulgent Banana Cream Pie. It has a flaky buttery crust. When that has cooled you bittersweet chocolate caramel pudding and top that with sliced bananas. Pour a thick layer of caramel pudding on top of the bananas and chocolate. Chill the pie and top it with sweet whipped cream, sliced bittersweet chocolate truffles, chocolate sauce and bruleed bananas."


Now that you've seen it, here are the recipes. Rachel also wanted everyone to be aware of a really neat project that goes along with this month's theme as well. Here is a little message from Rachel about the "Pies That Evoke Your Dreams Project."

Sound delicious? Make a contribution to a non-profit helping to transform the world of food through pie- Pie Ranch. Please specify "Pie Ranch/Green Oaks Fund” in the "Designation" field of the online donation form (Pie Ranch is fiscally sponsored by the Rudolph Steiner Foundation) at:

Make sure to check Rachel's blog on Feb 29th for the full round-up of delicious, dreamy pies.

Thanks to the original Domestic Goddess for creating such a fun event and to Rachel for hosting this month and bringing a good cause along with it a fun reason to make something sweet. Way to go!

Buttery Pastry Shell (recipe from Thomas Keller via Food & Wine)

2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted, plus more for dusting
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 sticks chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1/4 cup ice water
Canola oil, for brushing

In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle, mix 1 cup of the flour with the salt. At low speed, add the butter pieces, a handful at a time.


When all of the butter has been added, increase the speed to medium and mix until the butter is completely incorporated. Reduce the speed to low and add the remaining 1 cup of flour just until blended. Mix in the water just until thoroughly incorporated.


Flatten the pastry into an 8-inch disk, wrap in plastic and refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour or overnight.


Set the ring of a 9-inch springform pan on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper, leaving the hinge open. Brush the inside of the ring with oil.


Dust the pastry on both sides with flour. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the pastry to a 16-inch round, about 3/16 inch thick. Carefully roll the pastry around the rolling pin and transfer to the prepared ring, pressing it into the corners. Trim the overhanging pastry to 1 inch and press it firmly against the outside of the ring. Use the trimmings to fill any cracks. Refrigerate the shell for 20 minutes.


Preheat the oven to 375°. Line the pastry shell with a 14-inch round of parchment paper; fill the shell with dried beans or rice.


Bake for about 40 minutes, or until the edge of the dough is lightly browned. Remove the parchment and beans and continue baking the pastry shell for about 15 minutes longer, or until richly browned on the bottom. Transfer the baking sheet to a rack and let the pastry cool.


Fill any cracks with the reserved pastry dough.

MAKE AHEAD The uncooked pastry can be frozen for up to 1 month. The baked pastry shell can be wrapped in plastic and kept at room temperature overnight.

Caramel Black Bottom Pudding (Courtesty Gourmet Magazine)

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup heavy cream
3 cups whole milk
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 ounces fine quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), finely chopped
Unsweetened whipped cream, for garnish

Cook sugar in a dry heavy saucepan over moderate heat, undisturbed, until it begins to melt. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally with a fork, until sugar is melted into a deep golden caramel. Remove from heat and carefully add cream in a slow stream (mixture will bubble and steam). Return to low heat and cook, whisking, until smooth.


Stir together 1/2 cup milk and cornstarch. Beat eggs, vanilla, and salt in another bowl.

Stir remaining 2 1/2 cups milk into caramel and bring to a simmer, whisking occasionally. Stir cornstarch mixture, then whisk into caramel. Bring to a boil, whisking, and simmer, whisking, 2 minutes, then remove from heat.

Whisk about 1 cup hot caramel mixture into egg mixture until well blended, then whisk egg mixture back into caramel. Continue whisking off the heat for 1 minute.

Whisk 1 cup hot caramel pudding into chopped chocolate, stirring until smooth. Spoon chocolate pudding into the bottom of the pastry shell and top with sliced bananas.


Then top with caramel pudding. Chill until set, at least 3 hours.


Decorate as desired with bananas and chocolate (shown here with banana slices with caramelized sugar and sliced chocolate truffles) and whipped cream.



Rachel said...

And thank you for indulging us- it's a spectacular journey to come to your blog. Thank you for your gooey, adventurous foray into the Pies Project!

Cakelaw said...

Yum - I love rich, self-indulgent pies Holly!

Domestic Goddess said...

Oh, my teeth hurt and my head is spinning just from reading your recipe...amazing! I love cream pies and this one is a definite winner. Thanks so much for joining in on SHF!

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