Monday, October 6, 2008

An Improbable Pie-Mutation

I was looking through a Pillsbury Bake-Off cookbook of my mother's last Thanksgiving. This particular cookbook is 40 years old, and I frequently like reading recipes from the 1950s and 1960s because it's kind of neat in a funny way to read recipes that proudly trumpet the amazing dishes you can make for your family using things like Spam, Wonderbread, and Cheez-Its.

Anyway, I was reading it and THIS leapt out at me:

Wow - I don't even know what to say about this. It looks like a pie that mutated, and the list of ingredients indicates a truly bizarre mix of flavors - coconut, pecans, and lime. It's actually pretty simple to make - It's just pre-baking the crust, with a little toasting, a little whipping, a little spreading, and a little spooning.

And y'know what? This is actually pretty tasty. I would suggest letting the lime sherbet sit out of the freezer for a good 15 minutes or so to soften it, or spoon it out into a large bowl and stir it a bit until it's softer - if it's too hard, you're going to have a hell of a time spreading it without breaking the crust.

Macaroon Crunch Pie

9-in. pie crust
1/2 c. shredded coconut
1 pint lime sherbet (1/2 a quart)
1 1/2 c. heavy whipping cream
1/3 c. powdered sugar
1 cup crushed macaroon cookies* (I bought a brand that was called (I think) Southern Kitchen)
1/2 c. chopped pecans

Pre-bake a 9-in pie crust, either using a store-bought brand or your favorite homemade recipe. When the crust comes out of the oven, spread the coconut on a small baking sheet or a piece of heavy-duty foil and toast it for a few minutes. Let the crust and coconut cool COMPLETELY.

Set aside 2 tablespoons of the coconut and spread the rest in the bottom of the crust. Spread the soft sherbet over it and pop it in the freezer while you get on with the rest of the recipe.

Whip the heavy cream until it begins to thicken, add the sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Set aside 1 cup of that for later. Fold the cookie crumbs and pecans into the rest of the whipped cream. Take the pie out of the freezer and spread the crumb-cream mixture until it completely covers the sherbert (it will help keep it frozen later). Take that reserved 1 cup of whipped cream and dab spoonfuls of it around the edge of the pie, then sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons of coconut in the center. Put it back in the freezer and let it sit overnight.

*Buy thin, crispy coconut cookies. DO NOT buy those delicious, soft, mounded macaroons that look like snowballs - they are FAR too soft to crumble well.

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