For someone who has mild anal retentive tendencies, moving ranks right up there with having a full bladder in a traffic jam as one of the most stressful activities one can encounter.
Moving requires your life to be placed into Chiquita banana boxes. To top it off, you’re forced to sleep on the floor for a few nights and your usually straight, orderly, and well-stocked kitchen is totally out of commission. Once the moving truck is unloaded, it becomes a race to unpack the mixing bowls, vanilla extract, and pastry cutter fast enough so that you might regain a hint of order in your life again.
In the olden days, your new neighbors would bring you a warming gift of fresh flowers and something home baked. It’s traditions like this that makes me wish I were born about 40 years earlier. Alas, the only move-in gifts we got from the new neighbors were Sunday morning techno beats and a constant wift of cigarette smoke through the bushes. But there’s no reason to complain. No, we’re quite satisfied with the new place. Not only do we have a bathtub again, we have a patio showered with 14 hours of sunlight (it’s midsummer!), and the kitchen back in order for making moving-in-day pie.
The way I see it, it’s not really a home until it’s been christened with a decent pie. Five-Layer Chocolate Pie was the lucky pie of choice for moving-in-day.
Never had Five-Layer-Chocolate Pie? First you take a pre-baked pie crust, preferably a decent homemade one, but any crust will do. Then you whip up a thin layer of meringue and scent it with a touch of cinnamon before baking it onto your crust. Layer three is rich, dark, melted chocolate that you coat onto the meringue after it’s cooled. Once the chocolate layer has hardened, you throw on some ordinary whipped cream to make layer four, before coating the top with a chocolate whipped cream to give you the whole shebang. Sounds hard? It isn’t. Sounds divine? It is.
Five-Layer Chocolate Pie
Amerikansk 5-lag sjokoladepai
*recipe adapted from Betty’s Pies in Two Harbors, MN
(makes one pie)
Layer 1: 1- 9 “ (18 cm) pre-baked pie crust (I like this one)
Layer 2: Meringue
2 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (can be omitted)
Layer 3: Chocolate
2 egg yolks, slightly beatened
1/4 cup (120 ml) cold water
1 cup (160 g) semi-sweet chocolate chips (or chopped chocolate bar)
Layer 4: Whipped Cream
1 cup (250 ml) heavy cream
1/4 cup (50 g) sugar
Layer 5: Chocolate Whipped Cream
*A combination of the ingredients from the chocolate and whipped cream layers.
1. Preheat oven to 325 F (150 C).
2. Beat egg whites until frothy, add vinegar, beating until soft mounds form. Gradually add the sugar, salt, and cinnamon and beat until meringue stands in stiff glossy peaks. Spread on the bottom and sides of the baked pie shell. Bake for 20 minutes, or until lightly browned. Cool.
3. Combine egg yolks, water, and chocolate chips and melt over a very low heat until the chocolate is melted. Allow to cool slightly, then spread 3 tablespoons of this over the cooled meringue. Cool.
4. Whip cream until thick and add the sugar and cinnamon. Spread half of this over the chocolate layer.
5. Combine remaining whipped cream with the remaining chocolate mixture. Spread this over the whipped cream layer. Cool in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours to allow for a full set-up. Will keep for several days in the refrigerator.