Chocolate Cream Pie with Oreo Crumb Crust

As you know, Sunday is Easter, a day when consuming obscene amounts of chocolate eggs, chocolate bunnies, and the like is downgraded to a misdemeanor as we indulge our collective passion for chocolate.

What better day, then, to try this Chocolate Cream Pie with Oreo Crumb Crust?

If you’ve never made a cream pie before…or it’s been a while…rest assured that it’s one of the easiest pies you can add to your repertoire. There’s no pastry to prepare – just a simple crumb crust. No fruit to peel or pie bubbling over in the oven. Indeed, nothing to bake at all, aside from the crust.

Bottom line: if you can bring a saucepan of liquid to a boil, you can do this.

Don’t care for Oreos? Then use a graham cracker crust – even, heaven forbid!, one you purchase at the supermarket.

I suppose the most difficult thing about making any cream pie is waiting for the filling to cool off and chill overnight. No cheating on this point. Without the required layover in the fridge, your filling won’t have the cool, silky texture you crave.

Permission is granted, however, to do a less-than-thorough job scraping out the saucepan so you have plenty of chocolate filling to sample.

Happy Easter, and I hope you enjoy the pie.

Ken Haedrich

Chocolate Cream Pie with Oreo Crumb Crust

Ingredients

  • OREO CRUMB CRUST
  • 3 cups coarsely broken up Oreo cookies (18 to 20 cookies)
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts or pecans
  • Big pinch of cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoons milk
  • FILLING
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 4 large yolks
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, in several pieces
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • TOPPING
  • 1 cup heavy cream or whipping cream
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Toasted coconut

Instructions

  1. MAKE THE CRUST: Preheat the oven to 350°. Get out a 9-inch deep-dish pie pan and butter the bottom and sides. Set aside.
  2. Put the Oreo cookies in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse repeatedly in long bursts to make fine crumbs. Transfer the crumbs to a large bowl. Mix in the nuts and cinnamon. Add the melted butter and mix well with a fork. Add the milk, then rub with your fingers to make a uniform, clumpy texture.
  3. Transfer the crumbs to the pie pan, pressing them evenly into the bottom and up the sides. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
  4. Place the pan on the center oven rack and bake for 8 minutes. Transfer to a rack and cool thoroughly.
  5. MAKE THE FILLING: Combine the sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a medium-size, heavy saucepan, preferably nonstick. Whisk to combine, then whisk in the milk and yolks. Place over medium heat and cook, whisking almost nonstop, until the mixture starts to boil and thicken noticeably, 5 to 7 minutes. (Note: be careful. The mixture may splatter as it boils. Wear long sleeves or oven mitts.)
  6. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter, one piece at a time, then the vanilla. Whisk in the chocolate, about a third at a time, until smooth and fully melted. Slowly pour the filling into the cooled pie shell and smooth the top with a spoon.
  7. Press a piece of plastic wrap directly over the filling, leaving no gaps or pockets, to prevent a skin from forming. Place the pie to a wire rack and cool thoroughly. Once cool, refrigerate at least 6 hours or preferably overnight.
  8. Just before serving, make the topping. Using a chilled bowl and beaters, beat the cream with an electric mixer until it holds soft peaks. Add the sugar and continue to beat until stiff but not grainy. Smooth the whipped cream over the pie then sprinkle the top with the toasted coconut. Slice and serve. Makes 8 to 10 servings.
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