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.
Recipe for the pie crust slightly adapted from Bon Appétit
Chocolate Lovers Pecan Pie
- 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)
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.