Double Chocolate Pumpkin Pie

This absolutely tastes as good as it sounds. The dough has chocolate (need I say more?), the chocolate topping is rich but not overly sweet, and the pumpkin filling is light but still creamy. It's a labor of love - making pie dough from scratch is a skill I have yet to master. For Thanksgiving dinner, though, it was worth it. If (and when) I make this again, I would do it a day in advance and let the finished pie sit in the refrigerator so the chocolate topping and pumpkin filling have time to firm up. But that's a minor quibble. I learned this recipe at a cooking class a few weeks ago, and only made a few tweaks to the original.

A note: At the end of the class I asked the instructor if I should change the proportions if I used margarine instead of butter. She looked at me like I was nuts and asked if I knew that margarine was, in her words, "not real food." When I tried to explain that I substituted margarine because it didn't have cholesterol, it didn't seem to register. I get that chefs are all about using the best ingredients (I am too), but that's not always possible for a host of reasons (health, financial, etc.)  Ditto when I've asked chefs about cutting out, or at least down, on salt - it's like I've asked them to stop using knives when they cook, they look so disturbed. Come on.

Finally, apologies for the photo quality up top, I had to take it with my phone.

Total time to cook: 2 hours (assuming you make the filling while the dough is chilling)
Makes one pie, but enough dough and chocolate topping for two pies.


For the crust
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 2/3 cup flour (plus a little extra to use when rolling out the dough)
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp sugar
8 tbsp margarine (1 stick), cut into small pieces
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1/4 cup vodka (the teacher explained that it keeps the crust flaky because the alcohol burns off when it bakes)
1/4 cup cold water

For the filling
2.5 cups pumpkin puree
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup heavy cream

For the chocolate topping
1 1/8 cup semi-sweet chocolate pieces
1 cup heavy cream
1/8 cup sugar
1 tbsp corn syrup
1 tbsp margarine

- Start by making the dough. In a food processor, add the cocoa, flour, salt, sugar, butter and shortening. Mix in short pulses until all the ingredients are incorporated but not so much that it starts to clump.
- Add the vodka and water and keep pulsing until it starts to form large pieces. 
- In as few moves as possible (you want to limit the amount of extra heat you introduce from your hands) form the dough into a ball in the middle of a piece of plastic wrap. Wrap the dough, flatten into a rough disk and refrigerate for at least an hour.
- While the dough is chilling, make the pumpkin filling. In a medium bowl, mix the spices and salt into the pumpkin puree.
- Mix in the sugar, and then mix in the eggs one at a time. 
- Fold in the heavy cream until everything is incorporated. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the dough is ready.
- Once the dough is chilled, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut the dough in half and rewrap one half to go back in the fridge for another time.
- Sprinkle a little flour onto a cutting board. Place the dough in the middle of the cutting board. Roll out into a circle - roll in one direction and constantly turn the dough for an even circle (and to stop the dough from sticking to the cutting board). 
- The dough should be one eighth of an inch thick and have a larger circumference than the pan. An easy way to gauge this is to flip the pie pan upside down and place it over the dough. If one side is larger than another, you can tear small pieces and press them into other sides to make it even.
- Lay the dough into the pie pan. Crimp and fold over the excess dough to create a thicker top rim of the crust.
- Pour the pumpkin filling into the crust. Bake at 400 degree for 10 minutes and then reduce the heat to 350 degrees and bake for at least another 45 minutes. The crust should feel hard and the filling should seem thicker and be a deeper shade of orange.
- While the pie is baking, make the chocolate topping. Put the chocolate in a small bowl and set aside.
- In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the heavy cream, sugar and corn syrup to a boil.
- Pour the mixture into the bowl with the chocolate and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Gently mix in the margarine.
- Cover and set aside until the pie is done. It should be allowed to cool a little but still liquid.
- When the pie is finished baking, let it cool for at least 15 minutes before adding the chocolate topping. This recipe makes more chocolate topping than is needed for one pie, so I saved the rest for later.
- Let the pie chill in the refrigerator for a few hours before serving (ideally overnight). Serve chilled or at room temperature.

No comments:

Post a Comment