baking as a saving grace
through the stress and chaos in life, baking seems to save you time and time again. whether it be the soothing feeling that overcomes when the only thing on your mind is your devotion to creating a moist chocolatey muffin to greet you in the morning, the actual delight when biting into a ganache and buttercream layered espresso fudge cake, or being able to create a slice of chocolate and cream silk with a special someone.. baking comes through for me every time. and let's not forget the happiness that reflects off the faces of those who receive a share of the sugared joy made with care. even if sometimes it feels like friends love your desserts more than you. i have been quite busy lately..leading to enormous amounts of stress. but finally a sense of relief has come over and i can start to enjoy myself and life to its fullest again. and as fantastic as baking is, you can really enjoy it so much more when you don't have to do work or worry about it when it is in the oven and you are waiting to take it out. this saturday i'm leaving for philadelphia for a national speech and debate tournament.. but i will be sure to enjoy myself and the city, and of course the company of my friends whom i treasure. and there is not a better way to depart than making raspberry bars to take with us on the flight. so this is a tribute to baking that carries us through the toughest times and accompanies us through the happiest.
here is my new favorite pie to make, but an old favorite to eat.. with even more chocolate than the original by using an Oreo cookie crust instead of the usual pastry crust (although the classic is always good). nothing is more satisfying than serving yourself, a loved one, or anyone who would appreciate a taste of chocolate heaven, a slice of this pie after waiting for it to set in the refrigerator. i used pasteurized eggs, but the raw egg isue isn't that large.. and most certainly not large enough to stop you from making it. this pie is worth the risks... :)
French Silk Pie (Not pictured, sadly didn't get a chance)
Adapted from Pilsbury.com
~4 tbsp butter (2 oz), melted
A little less than two rows of Oreos, or any chocolate wafer cookies (About 30?)
3 oz unsweetened chocolate, cut into pieces
1 cup butter, softened (do not use margarine)
1 cup superfine or castor sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
4 pasteurized eggs or 1 cup fat-free cholesterol-free egg product
1 cup heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
A few tsp powdered sugar
Chocolate curls, if desired
1. Mash up Oreo cookies until mostly crumbs, although leave a few larger chunks. Mix together with melted butter and press into pie pan. Refrigerate until the filling is ready.
2. In medium saucepan, melt chocolate over low heat; cool. In small bowl with electric mixer, beat butter on medium speed until fluffy. Gradually beat in sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in cooled chocolate and vanilla until well blended.
3. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating on high speed 2 minutes after each addition; beat until mixture is smooth and fluffy. Pour into cooled crust. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving. Whip cream with vanilla and a bit of sugar and layer on the pie. Decorate with chocolate curls. Slice. Eat. Enjoy. Store in refrigerator.
Makes 8 delicious servings