Monday, August 30, 2010

All It's Cracked Up to Be- Crack Pie

I have never eaten at any of the Momofuku restaurants in NYC, so I have not tasted first hand any of Christina Tosi's unusual sweets. I must admit that reading about her recipes recently in Bon Appetit did not make me want to jump up and bake. Most of the described desserts sound unappealing to me. I am sure they taste good, but the combination of ingredients makes me think of something we used to do at summer camp- mixing everything from the table into one disgusting mess and daring someone to taste it. However, she is the pastry chef of the Momofuku "empire" so she has to be doing something right.  I decided to try the Crack Pie- the ingredients are much more palatable- and the play on words reeled me in.   It is delicious- a little too sweet for me to get addicted, but I can understand the attraction.  The filling actually reminds me a little of shoo fly pie. Allow a good chunk of time to make this, including an overnight in the refrigerator.

Crack Pie
from Bon Appetit, September, 2010

Oat Cookie Crust
9 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
5 1/2 tablespoons packed golden brown sugar
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 large egg
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons old-fashioned oats
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

Filling
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup golden brown sugar
1 tablespoon nonfat dry milk powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 ounces unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
6 1/2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
4 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
confectioner's sugar for dusting

Oat Cookie Crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 13x9x2 inch metal baking pan with parchment paper and coat with nonstick spray. Combine 6 tablespoons butter, 4 tablespoons brown sugar and 2 tablespoons granulated sugar in medium bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat mixture until light and fluffy, occasionally scraping down bowl, about 2 minutes.  Add egg, beat until pale and fluffy. Add oats, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and beat until well blended,  about 1 minute.  Turn oat mixture out into prepared baking pan and press out evenly to the edges of the pan. Bake until light golden on top, 17 to 18 minutes.  Transfer pan to rack and cool completely.   When cool, using hands, crumble oat cookie into large bowl and add 3 tablespoons butter and 1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar.  Rub in with fingertips until mixture is moist enough to stick together.  Transfer cookie crust mixture to 9 in diameter glass pie dish.  Using fingers, press mixture evenly onto bottom and up sides of pie dish. Place pie dish on rimmed baking sheet.

Filling: Position rack in center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F.  Whisk both sugars, milk powder and salt in medium bowl to blend.  Add melted butter and whisk until blended.  Add cream, then egg yolks and vanilla and whisk until blended.  Pour filling into crust.  Bake pie 30 minutes (filling may begin to bubble).  Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees F.  Continue to bake pie until filling is brown in spots and set around the edges, but center still moves slightly when pie dish is gently shaken, 10-20 minutes.  Cool pie 2 hours in pie dish on rack.  Chill uncovered overnight.  Sift powdered sugar lightly over top of pie.  Cut into wedges and serve cold.  ((post by Susan))

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