Monthly Archives: October 2013

  • Chocolate Lovers Pecan Pie
  • Chocolate Lovers Pecan Pie

Chocolate Lovers Pecan Pie

Posted on October 28, 2013
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A few weekends ago I drove up to Vancouver, B.C. Oh man. It was totally love at first site. Vancouver is such an incredibly beautiful and vibrant city, with way more to do than anyone could hope to accomplish in a single three-day weekend. I’m all ready itching to go back.

Since it was my first time visiting, I did some of the usual touristy things. I soaked up the views at Stanley Park, released my inner child at the Capilano Suspension Bridge, took a ride on the Aquabus and dinned at the immensely popular Vij’s (and might I add that it was truly amazing and all the hype you may have heard is true). Oh and of course I went to the Granville Island Public Market. I always have to check out the local markets when I visit a new place.

The Granville Island Public Market is situated right on the waterfront and is home to a wide selection of local products. They have everything from soaps to seafood to soufflés. I had a great time browsing and sampling all the treats. And I happened to be there on Canadian Thanksgiving, so all the vendors were stocked with roasted turkey, cranberry sauce, stuffing and of course pie. Mmmmm…pie.

Getting to sample all those traditional Thanksgiving foods has me seriously PUMPED for our American Thanksgiving. I’ve got it bad. I wish it was right now.

Patience have never been one of my best qualities.

So to quell my early bird urges, I decided to make my favorite Thanksgiving dessert: pecan pie. But not any old pecan pie. This is a Chocolate Lovers Pecan Pie! It has melted dark chocolate in the filling AND a chocolate crust. Double the chocolate = double the fun. Yes it does.

Just look at how dark and rich that pie filling is. I can’t even handle it. So good. In fact, this pie is so good that I’m considering making this version for Thanksgiving this year in lieu of the traditional pecan pie. That’s a big deal.

Make sure to use dark chocolate (I recommend 70%) to prevent this pie from getting overly sweet. A you have my permission to pile on the whipped cream. Not that you needed permission from me to do that.

Cheers,

Liz

Recipe for the pie crust slightly adapted from Bon Appétit

Chocolate Lovers Pecan Pie

Yield: Makes one 9-inch pie

Chocolate Lovers Pecan Pie

Ingredients

  • For the Chocolate Pie Crust
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and chilled
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening, cut into small pieces and chilled
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup ice cold water

  • For the Pie Filling
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 ounces chopped dark chocolate
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cups light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. lemon zest
  • 1 1/2 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 cups whole pecans

  • For the Whipped Cream
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream, cold
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners sugar (you could also use granulated sugar)

Instructions

  1. Make the pie crust. Using your food processor with the blade attachment, pulse together the cocoa powder, sugar, salt and flour. Add the chilled butter and shortening and pulse until the pea-size crumbs are formed. In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolk, vinegar and water. Drizzle half of this mixture over the crumbs and pulse a few times to combine. Then add the remaining egg mixture and continue pulsing until the dough comes together into a loose ball. Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and use your hands to flatten and shape it into a 1-inch thick disk. Wrap the disk in plastic wrap and chill it in your refrigerator for at least 1 hour or up to 2 days.
  2. Blind bake the pie crust. Roll the dough out between two pieces of waxed paper until it's approximately 13-inches in diameter. Transfer the dough to a 9-inch pie dish, pressing the dough down evenly and firmly into the bottom and sides of the dish. Trim the edges of the dough, leaving about a 3/4-inch overhang. Fold the dough under and crimp with your fingers or a fork. For the design you see in the photographs, simply press your index finger firmly into the dough, leaving a small space between each indentation. Transfer the pie crust to the freezer for 15 minutes. Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees. Remove the pie crust from the freezer. Line the crust with a piece of aluminum foil, allowing the aluminum foil to hang over the edges, pressing it down so it directly contacts the bottom and the sides of the crust . Fill with pie weights or dried beans and transfer to your oven to bake for 20 minutes. Remove the pie crust from the oven and lift off the aluminum foil and the pie weights/beans. Place the pie crust back in the oven and bake for another 5 minutes. Remove the pie crust from the oven and set aside. Increase your oven temperature to 375 degrees.
  3. Make the pie filling. In a small heavy-bottom sauce pan over medium heat, melt the butter and the dark chocolate, stirring continuously until the mixture is smooth. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly. In a large bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Whisk in the melted butter-chocolate mixture and the remaining ingredients, except for the pecans. Once the mixture is well combined, fold in the pecans.
  4. Pour the pie filling into your prepared crust and bake the pie on the bottom rack of your pre-heated oven for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, cover the pie loosely with aluminum foil and bake for an addition 5-8 minutes. Remove the pie from the oven and allow it to cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.
  5. While the pie is cooling, make the whipped cream. Place the bowl of your mixer and the whisk attachment in your freezer for 5-10 minutes. Once chilled, remove from the freezer and immediately add the cream and vanilla extract and start whisking on medium speed. Whisk until the cream starts to thicken, then add the confectioners sugar and increase the speed of your mixer. Continue whisking until peaks form. Whipped cream is best when its used immediately, but it can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple hours if necessary.
  6. Once the pie is completely cooled, you can slice and serve it with a big dollop of whipped cream. Leftover pie can be stored in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.
https://www.floatingkitchen.net/chocolate-lovers-pecan-pie/
  • Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing
  • Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing

Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing

Posted on October 25, 2013

As promised, I’ve got another squash and apple recipe for you today. This time I trying to make a dent in my stock pile of acorn squashes. I brought home several from my trip to Gordon Skagit Farms. And then on top of that, I received a couple in my CSA box this week. So I’m buried in acorn squash! But I don’t mind much. There are much worse problems to have.

Acorn squash just begs to be stuffed. Once you cut it in half and scoop out the seeds you have the most perfect little edible bowl staring you right in the face. So naturally I was compelled to whip up a hearty and healthy stuffing. On a whim I tossed together some cooked wild rice, onions, celery, apples, kale and pecans for a colorful and flavorful stuffing that provides just the right amount of texture and contrast to the softness of the cooked squash.

This was a total “clean out the refrigerator” type of recipe. Which means it’s highly adaptable to whatever you may have on hand. Leeks or shallots would be great in place of the onion. Try pears or dried cranberries instead of the apple. And any greens (spinach or chard) or nuts (walnuts or almonds) would be delicious too. It’s all good. And you know what else is good? The fact that you can cook and stuff the acorn squash in advance, then simply re-warm it before serving.

I enjoyed these as a hearty vegetarian (and vegan!) entrée. But these little beauties make for an excellent side dish as well. Grains and vegetables all in one = winning in my book.

Cheers,

Liz

Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing

Yield: Makes 6 halves

Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing

Ingredients

  • 3 acorn squash
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup onions, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. curry powder
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium apple, diced
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 cups loosely packed kale, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup pecans, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups cooked wild rice

Instructions

  1. Cook the acorn squash. Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees. Cut the acorn squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out and discard the seeds. Place the squash halves cut side down in baking dishes (you'll need two or three baking pans, depending on the size of the squash and how good you are at puzzling them together to fit into the pan!). Add about an inch of water to the baking pan(s). Transfer to your pre-heated oven and bake for 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  2. While the squash is cooking, make the wild rice stuffing. In a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onions, celery, salt and pepper. Sauté until the onions and celery are softened, about 5 minutes. Add the curry powder, garlic, apple and maple syrup, sautéing until the garlic is fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. Turn off the heat. Fold in the kale, pecans and cooked rice. Set aside.
  3. Stuff the acorn squash. Carefully flip the squash over so that the cut side is facing up (a spatula is helpful for getting under the squash) and drain the water from the baking pans. Stuff each cavity with the wild rice stuffing mixture, dividing it evenly between the squash halves. Transfer the stuffed squash back to your 350 degree oven and bake for an additional 15 minutes to finish cooking the squash and to re-warm the stuffing. Remove from the oven and serve.
  4. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container for 2-3 days.

Notes

1. Cooking time for the wild rice will depend on what kind and brand you buy. Follow the instructions on the package.

https://www.floatingkitchen.net/acorn-squash-with-wild-rice-stuffing/

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