Saturday, August 4, 2012

coconut cream pie.


I've changed my blog layout! Even though I'm fine with my old classic template, I wanted a template that is wider so that I can increase the size of my pictures. For that boom effect, you know? Unfortunately, most of the default templates Blogger has are templates that I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole. I chose the simplest and most straightforward template I could find and added changed the border background colour and that's it. I'm not a computer whiz and I would rather not bring upon a huge headache for myself downloading and fiddling with template codes so I guess this would have to do for now. I do miss my old template though.

Anyway, let's talk pie. I was scrolling through my to-bake list recently and found coconut cream pie listed there. I have no idea how it got there but I must have been strongly inspired to bake coconut cream pie at some point. I've been overloading on cakes recently so I went with the pie for a change.


Maybe the best coconut cream pie recipes have coconut cream, coconut milk and all that but I didn't want to buy those extra ingredients just to make this recipe since I was only going to make a small batch. In the end, I took a little bit of this and that from various recipes and ended up with a version that used whole milk with coconut extract and desiccated coconut, ingredients that I have readily on hand.


I've not had a coconut cream pie before so I can't boast how it easily outshines other versions but I can vouch for how delicious and un-fussy it is. The coconut pastry cream wasn't too thick and the pie crust was delicious as always. I didn't quite like the desiccated coconut in the pastry cream because it added too much texture for my liking. I guess that's why normal recipes call for shredded coconut. The good thing about desiccated coconut though is that it is unsweetened and hence makes the pastry cream less sweet overall.

I wish I'd piled on more whipped cream. I'm turning into a whipped cream monster.


Coconut Cream Pie
adapted from various sources

For the pie crust, refer to the recipe here

For the coconut pastry cream:
1/2 cup sugar
3 tbsp cornstarch
2 eggs
2 1/2 cup whole milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp coconut extract
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut or desiccated coconut

Whisk the sugar, cornstarch and eggs in a bowl. Bring the whole milk to a simmer. Slowly stream the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture, whisking the egg mixture constantly. Pour the custard back into the saucepan and bring to a boil, whisking constantly. When the mixture has come to a boil, let it keep bubbling away for a minute to ensure that the cornstarch thickens the mixture to optimum consistency. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla and coconut extracts. Stir in the coconut.

Let the mixture cool before pouring it into the baked and cooled pie crust. After the pie crust has been filled, refrigerate the pie until completely chilled, about 4 hours.

Assembly:
1 cup heavy cream
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp sweetened shredded coconut or desiccated coconut, toasted and cooled

Just before serving, whip the heavy cream and sugar until the cream is at the soft peak stage. Mound the cream on top of the pie and sprinkle with the toasted coconut.

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