Wednesday, February 20, 2008

SHF - Gonna Love Ya Til I Die Pie - Pies That Evoke Your Dreams

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:

Tart shell

185g sifted plain flour
40g sifted cocoa powder
40g icing sugar (powdered sugar)
125g cubed cold butter
2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon cold water

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
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
zest of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon lemon juice
125g fresh or frozen raspberries (don't thaw frozen ones)

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.

Caramel topping

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.

Meringue topping

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:


Peter M said...

Raspberries are my favourite berry. Cake is cake (everyone loves cake). Both equal happy campers all'round!

Ivy said...

Wow, what a tart. All my favourite ingredients. How did you manage to take it out of the tart tin?

Anonymous said...

You had me singing the pie song from the movie "Michael" haha :)

Rosie said...

Oh my, my, my, I feel like I'm in sugar heaven and I love it here!!!

This is a stunning piece of art work here cakelaw and all I would like to do is take my knife and cut a huge slice off to eat NOW - drool = drool!!

Rosie x

Cakespy said...

Gosh, I would love to swim in that foamy sea of meringue. This looks wonderful, and different from anything I have ever seen!

Ivy said...

Good morning!

You've been tagged for a MeMe!

Cakelaw said...

Hi Peter, the raspberries were essential here - a little bit of tartness in all the sweetness.

Thanks Ivy. I used a loose bottomed pie pan that enables you to lift the base out of the tin by placing it on an upturned cup or glass.

LOL Maryann - I just love John Travolta in that movie.

Thanks Rosie - I'll save you a piece ;)

Thanks Cakespy - 'tis a truly wonderful meringue topping recipe - so glad that the DBs introduced me to it.

Wow, thanks Ivy, my first Meme - can't wait to get stuck into it.

Gretchen Noelle said...

Gorgeous pie! All flavors that i enjoy together!

Tammy said...

wow! that is a work of art. I love the idea of the caramel layer!!!

Anamika:The Sugarcrafter said...

Dear Cakelaw
By law, i adore your recipe and the presenation, your highness !
Thanks for leaving your blogprints, we can now be in touch !
Cheers for nice work, including your meme details.

Emiline said...

I love it! I'm all about OTT.

I've seen that movie. The pies were the best part. Better than the script and the acting. For sure. Ha ha. Don't tell anyone I said that.

Cakelaw said...

Thanks Gretchen - mine too.

Hi Tammy, thanks - the caramel would have been better if I'd used caramelised condensed milk instead, but this was a good susbtitute.

Thanks Anamika - I look forward to seeing more of your amazing sugarcraft creations.

Rachel said...


What a wonderful journey into the Wonder(land) of Pie- straight into the waves of meringue! Gorgeous, gorgeous! Thanks for your participation in SHF!

Cakelaw said...

Hi Emiline, I reckon the pies in Waitress were super too.

Thanks for hosting SHF this month Rachel and for choosing such a fun theme!

Domestic Goddess said...

It sounds absolutely divine...and not over the top at all in my opinion.

Thanks so much for joining in on SHF this month - it wouldn't have been the same without this gorgeous pie!

Indigo said...

If you made this for me I would love you FOREVER, and death wouldn't stop me XD. Definitely trying this.