Saturday, January 7, 2012

Baileys Chocolate Pie

how often do you eat chocolate? are you an occasional indulger or do you have to have it every day?

i'm firmly in the latter group and i blame two people (that's right, my actions are certainly no fault of my own). the first culprit is one of my college roommates, Nell. she's british and has her tea every morning and afternoon and chocolate everyday. nearly six years of living with her truly spoiled me because not only is she one of my favorite people, but she started my love of chocolate.  i like to think a little bit of chocolate daily keeps life rich and delicious.

the second person who really sealed the deal was my boss in my second job out of college, Teresa. i was working at a small, non-profit, land preservation organization and it was usually just the two if us in the office. i had gotten away from my daily chocolate habit somehow and she brought me right back. perhaps she made me think of Nellie and that felt like home but i immediately liked her and our daily chocolate fixes.

i no longer live with Nell or work with Teresa but a subtle memory of both of them is conjured up when i take my first bite of truly indulgent chocolate. a lindt truffle or spoonful of nutella does the trick for my daily fix, while a truly special occasion calls for chocolate espresso cupcakes, homemade truffles, chocolate-orange mousse, nutella mousse, or chocolate fudge tart (just to name a few).

so, needless to say, when this pie came into my radar, it immediately made my ever-growing "to make in the kitchen" list. (check out some of my list here.) i changed a couple of things in the recipe but the result in incredibly rich, dark, strong, and smooth chocolate pie. with hints of coffee, baileys, and a crunchy chocolate cookie crust, this baileys chocolate pie is worth breaking a new years resolution over (not that i am encouraging you to do so). don't be deterred by the directions. this isn't the easiest pie to make. the store-bought crust makes up for the extra work required by the filling. if you are a true chocolate lover, the effort will be well worth it.

p.s. i took this to our friends house for new years eve dinner and i think it was solely responsible for keeping their usually-asleep-by-8pm six-year-old daughter awake to see her first ever ball drop. so if caffeine keeps you up at night, consider yourself forewarned and simply eat this at lunchtime.

Baileys Chocolate Pie
adapted from bake @ 350

1 prepared chocolate cookie crust
2/3 cup baileys irish cream
1/2 cup dutch-process cocoa
2 large eggs, separated
3/4 tsp instant espresso powder
1/8 tsp kosher salt
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
4 tbs unsalted butter, cubed
1 cup heavy cream
6 tbs sugar

melt chopped chocolate in the microwave 30 seconds at a time stirring until melted. whisk in baileys, cocoa powder, egg yolks, espresso powder, and salt. set aside.

beat the cream until it is stiff and spoon into a large bowl (clean the mixing bowl, you will need it again).

in a double boiler, whisk the egg whites and sugar until the mixture reaches 140 degrees F (it took me about 8 minutes). pour egg white mixture into bowl of electric mixer and beat on medium high until mixture is shiny, cool, and peaks form. fold in cooled chocolate-baileys mixture and then fold in whipped cream being careful not to deflate the mixture.

spread over prepared chocolate crust and refrigerate 1-2 hours or overnight. enjoy chilled!

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