Dark Chocolate Ginger Cream Pie
Ginger is my mother. Growing up, none of my friend’s mothers had such an “exotic” name. I loved saying her name and to this day I still refer to her using her full name “Ginger Patrick–not mom. This is a version of Ginger Patrick’s pie. A rich dark chocolate pie with just a subtle sassy hint of ginger–not at all like Ginger Patrick.
Ginger’s Dark Chocolate Ginger Cream Pie
1 prepared pie dough for a single crust pie
1 cup granulated vanilla sugar*(can substitute regular sugar and add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract when whisking in butter)
1 cup evaporated milk
1 cup water
3 tablespoons (heaping) cornstarch
3 tablespoons quality unsweetened dark cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
4 egg yolks, beaten (save whites for meringue)
2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
6 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/3 cup super fine sugar
Preheat oven to 425º F.
Line a pie plate with prepared dough and decoratively crimp edges. Blind bake (just another term for pre-baking) by lining crust with parchment paper and filling with rice. Make sure to push the rice gently up the sides of the parchment. Bake for 20 minutes. Carefully remove the parchment and rice. Prick the bottom of the crust with a fork and return to the oven and bake until golden brown and just nearly done(approximately 10 to 20 minutes). Remove from oven and allow to cool while preparing the filling.
Reduce oven temperature to 375ºF.
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add vanilla sugar, evaporated milk, water and cornstarch. Whisk continually until sugar melts. Whisk in cocoa powder and ginger. Continue to whisk until combined. Temper eggs by placing egg yolks in a small bowl and stirring in 2 tablespoons of the hot cocoa mixture, one tablespoon at a time. Completely incorporate first tablespoon before adding second. Add tempered eggs to the saucepan and continue to whisk until mixture become thick. Remove from heat and whisk in butter to make the pie filling. Pour filling into the cooled pie crust. Chill for 2 hours.
In a large mixing bowl using a hand mixer or in a standing mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, add egg whites and whisk until soft peaks have formed. Whisk in cream of tartar. Whisk in fine sugar slowly. Continue to whisk until meringue is stiff and glossy. Top chilled pie with meringue, all the way up to the edge of the crust to seal, and bake until golden brown (approximately 10 minutes).
Weepy meringue?: Because meringue has such a high sugar content and sugar is hygroscopic (meaning it absorbs moisture from the atmosphere) it is the humidity in a moist kitchen that can cause your meringue to weep. This is especially noticeable on a very humid day. One way to avoid too much weeping is to add the sugar very slowly to the egg whites and making sure it is thoroughly incorporated after each addition since undissolved sugar can attract moisture. The best answer is, of course, to eat the pie right after the meringue is browned. Then you don’t have to worry about anything but a chocolate covered face.
Recipe from The Whole Hog Cookbook by Libbie Summers (Rizzoli) Photography by Chia Chong.
A perfect holiday gift! Why?? Here’s just a few reasons.
1. “an aggressively pretty cookbook” –The New York Times
2. National Foreword Book Award Finalist
3. Top 10 cookbooks of the year by Epicurious, Fox News, Chapter Books/Canada
4. Top holiday cookbooks by Bon Appetit
5. Because it’s delicious, beautiful and funny.
Try a new decorative pie crust crimp this holiday! This fun video show you 20 to choose from.