It is Sugar High Friday time again, and this month, it is hosted by Rachel of Vampituity. Rachel has chosen the theme of Pies That Evoke Your Dreams, inspired by the movie Waitress, which I have mentioned here before. The stars of the film include the imaginative pies with equally imaginative names created by the main character, Jenna, and it is through her pies that Jenna eventually makes a better life for herself.
I was excited when I learned of the theme that Rachel had chosen for SHF - I had wanted to invent my own pie and a catchy name for it ever since I saw Waitress, but never had the excuse or motivation to do so before.
For my entry, I have created a pie that evokes my personal dreams called Gonna Love Ya Til I Die Pie. This pie combines all of my favourite sweet foods (chocolate, cheesecake, raspberry, caramel and meringue) in one big pie, and it certainly evokes my dreams, as I have been dreaming about making it for weeks. It also evokes dreams of everlasting happiness, as symbolised by foods which make me feel happy. The name of this pie refers both to the fact that I have always loved these foods and am likely to always do so, and to the fact that it is something that I might make for a loved one as a token of my affection for them (if they had a sweet tooth!). And best of all, as the White Knight said to Alice in Through the Looking Glass, "It's my own invention."
My pie consisted of a chocolate-flavoured pastry shell:
topped with a raspberry baked cheesecake filling:
spread with a thin layer of gooey caramel:
and crowned by a foamy sea of meringue:
Was it OTT? Perhaps a little - but it sure tasted good, as evidenced by the fact that when I took it to work, nothing was left except the last tiny skerrick that no-one was game to take. This pie is very sweet and very rich, but this means that you only need a small slice to be satisfied. The sweetness of all of the other components was offset nicely by the raspberries, which added some essential tang and prevented the overall combination from becoming cloying.
If you would like to make this pie, the recipe is as follows:
185g sifted plain flour
Grease a 9 inch round pie tin (preferably with a removable base).
In a food processor, process together the flour, cocoa, icing sugar and butter until it resembles bread crumbs. Add the egg yolks and water, then process until the dough comes together into a ball. Press the dough into a rough disc shape, wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Remove the dough from the fridge and roll out with a rolling pin between 2 sheets of baking paper to approximately 3cm in thickness, then line the greased pie tin with the rolled out dough. Chill the dough in the tin for another 30 minutes.
Although I generally don't have any problems with pastry, this recipe was quite soft and tended to stretch in odd places when I lined the tin, leaving holes. (Perhaps the 35 degrees Celsius heat in Melbourne last night had something to do with it??) However, it was very forgiving, and I easily mended the holes by patching them with extra dough and massaging the patches until they blended in.
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Place a piece of baking paper over the pie shell, and fill with baking weights or uncooked rice, then bake the pie shell in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove the pie weights and the baking paper, then bake the pie shell for another 10 minutes before removing it from the oven and leaving to cool in the tin on a wire rack.
Raspberry baked cheesecake
500g cream cheese, cubed
Preheat your oven to 190 degrees Celsius. Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and sugar together until smooth, then beat in the eggs, one at a time. Carefully fold the lemon zest, lemon juice and raspberries through the cream cheese mixture with a spoon, then pour the mixture into the cooled pie shell, and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and allow it to cool while you prepare the meringue.
You could boil a tin of condensed milk covered in water in a saucepan for three and half hours to produce caramel. However, I opted for the lazy person's option, it being a school night, and used half a can of Nestle Top'n'Fill Caramel, which I spread over the top of the cooled cheesecake.
I topped my pie with meringue made according to the meringue recipe from last month's Daring Bakers lemon meringue pie, because I loved the sheer volume of this meringue. This time, I opted for a little less volume but a bit more art in the meringue by using my fingers to create tiny waves in the foamy sea, before baking for 15 minutes in a 190 degree Celsius oven.
If you make Gonna Love Ya Til I Die Pie, let me know how you went and what you thought of it - I'd love to hear from you! And do check out the roundup of other pies of people's dreams here. Thanks to Rachel for choosing such a great theme and for hosting SHF this month.
Sound delicious? Make a contribution to a non-profit helping to transform the world of food through pie - Pie Ranch. Please specify "Pie Ranch/Green Oaks Fund” in the "Designation" field of the online donation form (Pie Ranch is fiscally sponsored by the Rudolph Steiner Foundation) at: http://tinyurl.com/3bmn4c