“My hours are married to shadow.” – Sylvia Plath, excerpt from The Colossus
I am so excited to be sharing this recipe with you today. It’s no secret that I love using the rich and strong flavour of espresso in my cooking, and recently, more often than not, I have found myself incorporating it into more and more of my baked goods.
So, I was ecstatic when the kind people at Di Bella Coffee reached out a few weeks ago with the proposition to create a recipe utilising their wonderful product. I immediately agreed – because not only do I love drinking their coffee but I also love baking with it.
Pie has been on my mind lately. The last pie I made was this Dark Chocolate Mint Julep Pie for Kentucky Derby Day…and I feel like now is the right time for another rich and decadent pie to appear on my kitchen table, and on the pages of the blog.
I cannot remember the first time that I tried the combination of chocolate and espresso, though what I do know is that it is one of those classic flavour pairings that I frequently return to. The two ingredients when paired together are pure perfection.
This all leads to the creation of the resulting Chocolate and Espresso Pudding Cream Pie…which, I am happy to report was just as revolutionary and delicious as I hoped it would be.
Chocolate and Espresso Pudding Cream Pie unites the rich taste of Di Bella Coffee with the decadent flavour of bittersweet dark chocolate. A flaky chocolate and espresso pie crust is filled with an almost impossibly smooth chocolate espresso pudding which is chilled until the pudding sets and the flavours meld and develop. The pie is then topped with a generous amount of fluffy whipped cream, drizzled in a thick layer of chocolate espresso sauce and then finally scattered with a flourish of chocolate shavings and a dusting of dark cocoa powder.
The chocolate and espresso ratio is just right too – the addition of Di Bella Coffee used is as rich and flavourful as you might imagine though it’s neither too overwhelming nor overpowering. Upon first bite, my taste buds were pleasantly hit by the dark chocolate, and then the espresso slowly began to intertwine and seep…leaving a perfectly delicious resulting taste on my palette.
I wanted to make sure that I loved the Di Bella Coffee before I wrote about it, and I’m happy to report that I found it to be a great addition to my kitchen. So here’s the recipe. I’m sold on this pie. It’s easy, it’s creamy and it’s very decadent. True “adult” indulgence on every level.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup dutch processed cocoa powder
- 2 tsp. granulated sugar
- 1 tsp. finely ground Di Bella Coffee espresso powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 stick / 115 grams cold unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch / 1 ½ cm cubes
- ½ cup ice cold water
- 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup ice
- 1 egg white mixed with 1 tsp. water, for the glaze
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- ½ cup dutch processed cocoa powder
- ⅓ cup corn starch
- 1 tbsp. finely ground Di Bella Coffee espresso powder
- ½ tsp. salt
- 3 cups whole milk
- 4 ounces / 115 grams dark chocolate, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups heavy cream
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp. icing (confectioners’) sugar
- 2 ounces / 55 grams dark chocolate, finely chopped
- 1 tsp. finely ground Di Bella Coffee espresso powder
- 1 tbsp. dutch processed cocoa powder
- ½ cup heavy cream
- In a large bowl, mix the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, espresso and salt. Add the butter pieces and coat with the flour mixture then using a pastry scraper, begin to cut the butter into the flour until mostly pea sized pieces remain.
- Combine the water, apple cider vinegar and ice in a measuring cup or small bowl. Sprinkle 2 tbsp. of this mixture over the flour and mix and cut in with a bench scraper until incorporated. Continue to add 1 to 2 tbsp. of the ice water at a time until the dough just comes together.
- Using your hands bring the dough together, sprinkling any dry bits with droplets of water if needed. Shape into a disc, cover in plastic and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or overnight.
- Once chilled, remove the plastic wrap and let the dough thaw for 10 minutes before rolling it out on a lightly floured surface until it is 2 to 3 inches / 5 to 7 cm larger than the pie dish you are using, about ⅛ inch / .3 cm in thickness.
- Gently fit the dough into your buttered pie dish then neatly trim off any ragged edges. Tightly pinch and crimp the excess over-hanging dough, cover with plastic wrap and chill for a further 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, pre-heat the oven to 425 F / 220 C and place a baking tray in the center rack of the oven.
- Once chilled, use a fork to prick the bottom and sides of the dough, 15 to 20 times. Tightly cover with aluminium foil and freeze until solid, about 10 minutes. Once solid, pour pie weights or beans into the pan and spread them so that they are concentrated in the center.
- Place the pie on the pre-heated baking tray and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the pie from the oven, lift off the foil and weights, and let the crust cool for a few minutes. Use a pastry brush to coat the bottom and sides of the crust with a thin layer of the egg white glaze to moisten. Return the pan back to the tray and bake for 8 to 10 more minutes, or until crisp and browned. Remove and let cool completely before filling.
- For the filling, in a medium saucepan, whisk together the brown sugar, cocoa powder, corn starch, espresso and salt. Slowly whisk in 1 cup of the milk until smooth. Then, in a steady stream, whisk in 2 cups of the milk and mix until combined and glossy.
- Set the pan over medium-low heat and cook, whisking frequently, until the mixture has thickened, about 10 minutes. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, and cook, whisking constantly, for 2 minutes or until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon and leaves a trail.
- Remove the pan from the heat and immediately add in the chopped chocolate, butter and vanilla. Stir until the chocolate and butter are completely melted. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve and into a medium bowl then cover with plastic wrap so that the plastic touched the surface of the pudding. Refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours.
- For the whipped cream, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the cream, vanilla extract and icing (confectioners’) sugar. Beat until soft but firm peaks form, 4 to 5 minutes.
- Combine the finely chopped dark chocolate, espresso and cocoa powder in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Heat the cream in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently. When the mixture is at a light boil, pour it into the bowl containing the chocolate. Let sit for a minute before whisking the mixture until glossy and smooth.
- To assemble the pie, spoon the chilled chocolate espresso pudding filling into the pre-baked pie crust. Top with the whipped cream, chocolate espresso sauce and sprinkle generously with chocolate and cocoa powder if desired. The pie can be chilled until ready to serve.
This post is sponsored by Di Bella Coffee. All opinions are as always, my own.