Black Bottom Pie
Source: Maida Heatter's Book of Great Desserts (Andrews & McMeel Publishing, 1999 ed.), pg. 359.
This recipe is a variation of Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings (author of "The Yearling", "Cross Creek" and "Cross Creek Cookery"). Both recipes call for ginger (or gingersnaps) in the crust. I have to confess that I did not like the crust. The ginger was too strong and if I make it again, I will omit that. If you like ginger, you'll probably love it but if not, you are warned! Otherwise, this a light, creamy custard-like pie that has a lot of fans.
1 1/4 cups graham-cracker crumbs
1 TBS. sugar
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
2 oz. (1/2 stick) sweet butter
Adjust oven rack to the center and preheat to 375 degrees.
|Mix the crumbs with the sugar, ginger and cinnamon. Add the melted butter and stir.|
|Press the mixture against the sides of the pie plate (Maida recommends a glass plate). Bake in a pre-heated 375 degree oven until lightly browned around the edges.|
2 oz. (2 squares) unsweetened chocolate
1 TBS (1 envelope) unflavored gelatin
1/4 cup cold water
1 cup sugar
1 TBS cornstarch
Pinch of salt
4 large eggs, separated
1 3/4 cup milk
2 TBS dark rum
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
|Melt the chocolate in the top of a small double boiler over hot water on moderate heat. Set aside to cool slightly.|
|Sprinkle the envelope of gelatin over the cold water and set aside.|
|Place the egg yolks in the top of a double boiler and mix lightly with a wire whisk or fork.|
|In a small heavy saucepan over medium heat, scald the milk. You will see small bubbles or a wrinkled skin on the surface of the milk when it is ready.|
|Stir in the sugar-cornstarch mixture.|
|Gradually add the 1 cup of reserved custard to the chocolate, stirring constantly with a wire whisk. Mix until smooth. Add the vanilla, stir and turn the mixture into the prepared crust. Spread level and refrigerate.|
Refrigerate the pie for 2-3 hours. Then prepare the following whipped cream.
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup confectioners sugar
1 scant teaspoon vanilla extract
In a chilled bowl with chilled beaters, whip the ingredients until the cream holds a shape. Spread the cream evenly and smoothly over the filling. Or use a pastry bag fitted with a large star-shaped tube and form a heavy ruffled border. (Or spread the cream smoothly and sprinkle with grated or shaved chocolate)