How to make Margarita Pie:
a multi-phase recipe.
Makes one 9 inch pie.
Step 1: get inspired by something someone posted on the internets, like this:
Step 2: Make and drink a margarita.
Step 3: Desired weekend plane ticket currently costs an entire paycheck. This is infringing on your spontaneity. Try to measure in more reasonable units. That is still an obscene amount of shoes to justify. You are categorically not a baller.
Step 4: Preheat oven to 350. Start following a recipe for key lime pie, get distracted
Step 5: Melt 5 Tbs butter. Pulse 14 graham cracker (the big cookie of 4 sections) in a food processor or smash with a hammer. Combine in a bowl with 1/3 cup sugar, 1/4 teas salt, 1 Tbs triple sec, and 2 Tbs tequila.
Step 6: Fling buttery, tequila-y graham cracker crumbs all over your kitchen. Feel like a jerk cause the cleaning lady did such a nice job cleaning.
Step 7: Decide “I DO WHAT I WANT!!111!!!” Fling crumbs into your mouth.
Step 8: Decide buttery, tequila-y graham cracker crumbs are good enough to just eat with a spoon.
Step 9: Press crumb mixture into a 9 inch pie pan. Bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool while you make the filling.
Step 7: Continue making a mess.
Step 8: Combine 3 egg yolks, (reserve the whites and set aside), 1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk, zest of 3 limes, 1/2 cup lime juice, 1 Tbs tequila, 2 teas triple sec in a large bowl and whisk until well blended and eggs are frothy.
Step 9: Splatter mixture all over your ice cream maker which you’ve neglected to put away since Saturday.
Step 10: Pour into pie crust. Meanwhile, put egg whites in the bowl of a large stand mixer and beat on high until soft peaks form. Add 1/2 teas cream of tartar and 1/3 cup sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks form and meringue is glossy.
Step 11: Pour in 1 Tbs tequila because tequila is awesome. Mix until just combined.
Step 12: Spoon gently on top of lime mixture. Bake for 15-18 minutes. Let cool and refrigerate for at lest one hour before eating. Garnish with a gentle sprinkle of sea salt just before serving. Or not.
(Step 13: Clean up)
Step 14: Post on instagram.
My mother is a very reasonable woman. She’s practical. Rational. When it comes to food, she’s even more so. While I’m cooking up bacon ice cream with salted caramel topping, she’s putting together a delicate sponge with fresh berries. When I’m all butter cream and marshmallows, she’s whipped cream and a touch of bitter chocolate. I make messes. She barely needs to wipe the counter. I get upset with the ugly pastries. She doesn’t make ugly pastry. So when she sent me this particular recipe from a King Arthur Flour push marketing email, I thought, her email has been fished again. Not true. She was just having midnight craving moment where chocolate pie seemed like a reasonable desire.
I’ve never been a fan of King Arthur recipes – they tend to fail more than they win, and personally, I think they over complicate the directions so you’ll just give up and buy their cake mix. But this one, while again, slightly over complicated in directions, is a hands down WIN – if you’re into chocolate midnight pie. Check it out on the King Arthur website or copied below. You don’t need a pie shield, (the crust doesn’t brown that much), but do make sure the dough has ample time to rest, as the cream makes it tender. And note that they suggest refrigerating overnight before serving, (it really is rather liquidy out of the over, though not disturbingly so), so make this 24 hours in advance desired eating time.
Chocolate Midnight Pie
For the Crust
- 1 1/4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
- 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
- heaping 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
- 1/4 teaspoon espresso powder, optional but good
- 3 to 5 tablespoons milk or cream (half and half, light, heavy, or whipping)
For the Filling
- 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 large eggs
- 1/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa
- 2 tablespoons coffee liqueur* (e.g., Kahlua), or substitute strong brewed coffee
- 1 tablespoon cold milk or cream (half and half, light, heavy, or whipping)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon espresso powder, optional; for depth of flavor
- 2 tablespoons yellow or white cornmeal
- 2/3 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
- *Frangelico (hazelnut), Amaretto (almond), Grand Marnier (orange), or Framboise (raspberry) are all wonderful, in place of the coffee liqueur.
1) To make the crust: Stir together the flour, sugar, and salt.
2) Work the butter into the dry ingredients (using your fingers, a pastry blender or fork, or a mixer) until the dough is unevenly crumbly.
3) Dissolve the espresso powder in 1 tablespoon of the milk. Sprinkle up to 5 tablespoons (or more, if necessary) of the milk into the dry ingredients (beginning with the tablespoon of espresso milk), continuing to mix until the dough is cohesive. Grab a handful; if it holds together willingly, and doesn’t seem at all dry or crumbly, you’ve added enough liquid.
4) Shape the dough into a disk. Roll its edges along a floured work surface (as though the disk were a wheel), in order to smooth them out. Pat the disk until it’s about 1″ thick, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or overnight.
5) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Allow it to warm a bit and become flexible, 15 to 30 minutes
6) Flour your work surface, and roll the dough into a 12″ circle. Transfer the dough to a regular (not deep-dish) 9″ pie pan that’s at least 1 ¼” deep. Trim and crimp the edges. Place the crust in the refrigerator to chill, while you’re preparing the filling.
7) Beat together the butter, sugar, and salt until smooth.
8) Add the eggs one at a time, beating slowly but thoroughly after each addition; you want to combine them with the butter and sugar, but not beat in a lot of air.
9) Stir in the cocoa, liqueur, milk, and vanilla.
10) Use a food processor (mini, if you have one) to grind together the espresso powder, cornmeal, and chocolate chips. Add to the batter. Pour the batter into the crust.
11) Bake the pie for 45 minutes, adding a crust shield after 20 minutes. The middle may look pretty soft; so long as the temperature has reached 165°F right in the center, the pie is done.
12) Remove the pie from the oven, cool to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate overnight before serving.
13) Serve each slice topped with a layer of whipped cream and a sprinkle of chocolate curls, if desired.
Yield: 1 pie, 10 servings.