I don't know if I achieved my stated objective, but I'm pretty comfortable with pie crust these days. Gary not only eats it but also says he likes it. I'm ready to move on. Before I do, I just had to bake one more.
As I mentioned last year, I've been collecting a series of books, The Good Cook: Techniques & Recipes that were published by Time Life in the late 1970's. I currently own eighteen of them, with the most recent acquisition being, of course, Pies & Pastries.
As I read through my new book, one recipe in particular caught my eye. I didn't know what a Pixie Pie might be, and frankly didn't care. I wanted to make it because of the name.
Turns out it's chocolate and what's not to like about chocolate? Well, in my case, it's the gelatin. I don't have anything against gelatin from a vegetarian vs. non-vegetarian perspective. In fact, I think the gelatinous qualities of homemade chicken stock are one of the main reasons to make your own.
But when I was a kid, our family didn't have fruit suspended in jello for dessert. We didn't eat much jello at all, and when we did, I didn't care for the texture. I have memories (ah! now we're getting to something!) of being in the hospital and there being gelatin on the dreaded meal tray. Gag.
So. Pixie Pie is unlikely to be a repeat recipe. Which is sad, really. "Pixie" is a such a cute name.
[edit: Jean requested the recipe, so I may as well put it here, in case anyone else wants it]
1 fully baked pie shell (I used the Butter Pie Dough from Fine Cooking #54)
2 T. unflavored powdered gelatin
2/3 c. sugar, divided use
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 c. light cream
3/4 c. water
2 oz. unsweetened baking chocolate
3 eggs, separated, yolks lightly beaten
1 tsp. vanilla extract
whipped cream to serve
In a saucepan, thoroughly mix together the gelatin, 1/3 c. sugar, and the salt. Add the light cream, water, and chocolate. Stir over medium heat until the chocolate is melted and the gelatin dissolved; do not boil.
Stirring constantly, slowly pour the mixture over the egg yolks. Return the mixture to the saucepan, cook, and stir until thickened (about three minutes). Cool for 15 minutes.
Beat the egg whites until foamy. Gradually add the remaining sugar, beating to stiff peaks. Blend in the chocolate mixture. Add the vanilla extract. Spoon the filling into the cool pie shell. Chill until firm. Garnish with whipped cream.