Wouldn’t it be nice if the weather could just make up it’s mind and be consistent for 5 seconds? Yeah, that’d be great. Pff, as if!
It’s been rainy and cold a lot recently even though it’s supposed to be turning into summer here in Patagonia. I’ve been torn the last few weeks between, my desire to start digging out my lonely summertime wardrobe, and my slight hope that it stays cold enough to make the holiday season feel like my childhood in the North Hem. It’s really frustrating to still be cold half the day but if it has to be that way then I’m at least going to milk it for what it’s worth and rock my fuzzy jammies come Christmas morning. You know, cuz that’s how I roll.
Speaking of holidays, we’re putting up our decorations this weekend or early next week according to our age old family tradition of putting them up on the weekend prior to Thanksgiving. Fine, so we might have to bend our tradition a little this year and do it a little closer to Thanksgiving or even on the same day, but that’s okay because we’re having our fakin’ it Thanksgiving two days early this year so that my sister’s in-laws can be with us. They’ve been visiting this past week few weeks but they’ll actually be traveling home on the day-of so we wanted them to get their Thanksgiving dinner somehow.
Another exciting aspect of this year’s feast is that we’ll be having some Thanksgiving-dinner-virgins join us, isn’t that awesome? I’m sort of psyched up about serving someone their first Thanksgiving dinner ever and I get to serve 2 people. (Even if they are crazy Latinos [Hey, Diego!])
I’m not going to deny that I’m a little irked at one little thing though, we’ve decided to do roasted chicken instead of turkey this year. It’s not that I disagree with the decision or anything. I mean, we have a valid reason; our current home has an oven that’s barely bigger than the easy-bake I had when I was like 8. However, I’m sort of a traditionalist and I was balloting for the real thing this year.
How can we have a real (fake) Turkey day without an actual bird??? I also wanted to work on my turkey roasting skills for future holidays when the pressures on and maybe even stuff it with fancy ingredients like a pioneer woman, know what I’m sayin’? On the other hand, this year is so unofficial so I might be able to get over it since no one else seems to have an aversion to the plan. All the guests will just be close friends and family so the pressure feels very low and I’m loving that.
Okay but anyway, it’s going to be a fun meal this year even in spite of my poultry problems. I’ll console myself by making all of the desserts as traditional as possible, hello pie time! Do you remember when I told you how we’ve never really been a pie family outside of the Holidays? Well, this year I’ve actually cranked out a lot of pies (at least for me), but it’s especially true that the Holidays = pie in my opinion, so they’re a must.
So in my menu planning I felt like maybe we needed a new flavor this year but I wasn’t sure what. Honestly, I started on this recipe thinking I’d make my French silk pie (which I still want to share with you at some point) but then I switched gears and decided to go for a fudgy brownie pie instead. Sometimes the best things in life are born of spontaneity, don’t you think?
This pie turned out even better than I’d hoped. It’s a cross between a chewy brownie and a molten lava fudge cake all stuffed into a flaky pie crust that helps break up the richness. (Did you catch that part, it’s supposed to be gooey and molten!) Oh, and I can’t forget about the malt and all the chocolate chunks I threw in. I just think this needs to make it to your dessert table, that’s the major point here. P.S. Don’t forget the ice cream!
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 tablespoon salt
- 3 tablespoons lard, coconut oil, or organic vegetable shortening
- 6 tablespoons ice cold butter, cubed
- 1/4 cup ice cold water
- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
- 1 3/4 cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup malted milk powder
- 100g (about 4 ounces) semi-sweet dark chocolate
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1 cup flour
- 1 cup milk chocolate chips (or chunks), divided
- vanilla ice cream for serving if desired
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 C). Combine flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of food processor and pulse. Add butter and lard and pulse a few times more until crumbly. Add water and process until the dough comes together adding more water if necessary. Turn out onto lightly floured surface and flatten into disk. Roll out pastry dough on lightly floured surface into a circle that is roughly 13 inches in diameter. Gently wrap around rolling pin and lift over a 9-inch pie pan. Unroll over pan and press down gently; then crimp the edges into desired trim or brush with water and add small cut-outs of the extra dough. (For this pie I did a very simple trim.). Place crust in the freezer to get it as cold as possible until the oven is hot.
- Make a few slits in the bottom of your crust and, If you have them, place pie weights inside the crust and put it in the oven (*see note). Bake for about 10 minutes until the edges just start to darken slightly. Remove crust from oven and set aside while making your brownie filling.
- Beat butter and sugar together in a medium mixing bowl until creamed. Add The eggs, whisking them in well one at a time, then stir in salt, soda, vanilla, and malted milk powder until smooth. Melt the chocolate in a small double boiler until smooth then scrape into mixing bowl and mix well. Add the cocoa and flour to the bowl and whisk until your batter is smooth and creamy. Stir in about 1/2 of the milk chocolate chips and pour the batter into the crust. Sprinkle the top with the remaining chocolate as evenly as possible. Cover the edges of your crust with foil to keep them from burning and bake the pie for 30 to 35 minutes until the edges and top have darkened and the center just barely jiggles when you move the pan (you don't want it completely solid here because it will continue to cook after you remove it and then set up into a fudgy molten center once it has cooled a little.
- Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for at least 30 minutes. This pie is great served warm if you don't mind it messy, but room temp and chilled is great too. Oh, and don't forget to add a scoop of vanilla ice cream!
*You can also weight down your crust with a piece of foil filled with dried beans. It helps keep the shape totally even as itt bakes but in all honesty I usually skip it and just bake the crust alone.