This has been on the site for so long – 7 years? I loved reading the original write up and picturing us in our little borough house. All these years later, more kids to eat it and still as much as a hit as it was then.
Ever made a “cream” pie? Would be key lime, Â lemon meringue, chocolate or vanilla cream – something like that. Â You have to make a custard which means you have to “temper” your eggs. If you’ve ever made homemade pudding or pot de creme you’re familiar with this concept. It seems harder than it is, but this pie still takes focus. I love a cream pie – so throw back and perfect for any time of year. I included the recipe for salted caramel below but this can be bought at the store, same with the whipped cream. Below you’ll see the MOST scratch version but there is so much room to make it easier.Â This one is nice because it actually HAS to be made ahead. Make it the day before you need it then “dress it up” with the whipped cream, caramel and pretzels before serving. It appears impressive and tastes even better. Lastly it’s SUPER easy to make this gluten free. Just use GF pretzels! DF not going to happen as this is basically a dairy pie.
Chocolate Cream PretzelÂ Pie
1 1/4 c. crushed pretzels
1/3 c. brown sugar
6 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
2Â 1/2 c. half and half
1/3 c. sugar, divided
2 tbsp. cornstarch
6 egg yolks
6 tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces
6 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 tsp. vanilla
Whipped Cream topping
3/4 c. cold heavy cream
1 tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. sugar
2 tbsp. water
1/4 c. heavy cream
1 tbsp. unsalted butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor (or in a gallon ziplock bag), processÂ pretzelsÂ and sugar until fine crumbs are formed. Add melted butter. Pulse (or mix in a bowl) until mixture is evenly wet.
2. Transfer mixture to a pie plate. Using fingertips or a metal measuring cup, press crumbs into the bottom and up the sides of the plate.Â Bake on the center rack of the oven for 8 minutes or until fragrant. Set aside to cool.
3. Meanwhile, in a medium sauce pan, bring half and half, salt, and 3 tbsp. of the sugar to a simmer over medium high heat.Â Measure outÂ 1/3 c. of sugar BEFORE adding the three tbsp. to the half and half.Â
4. In a small bowl, combine the remainingÂ sugar and the cornstarch.
5. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks until slightly thickened. AddÂ the sugar/cornstarch mixture over the egg yolks and whisk for about 30 seconds.Â Take a ladle and addÂ about 1/2 c. of the half and half mixture to the egg mixture while whisking constantly. Continue to ladle more in and whisking until the majority of the half and half mixture is with the eggs.
6. Add mixture back to the pot,Â whisking constantly. Whisk over medium high heat until mixture bubbles and thickens.Â Turn off the heat.Â Whisk in the butter until incorporated. Add the chocolates and whisk until melted. Stir in the vanilla.
7. Pour mixture into cooled pie crust and spread evenly. Press a sheet of plastic wrap directly over the top (touching the chocolate).Â Chill at least 6 hours in the fridge (or up to 24 hours).
8. Close to serving, make whipped cream topping by combiningÂ heavy cream and sugar inÂ a bowl and whisking (or use electric mixer) until beginning to thicken.Â Add vanilla. Continue to whisk until the whisk makes waves in the cream and whenÂ you pull it up, a stiff peak is formed in the whipped cream.
9. Remove plastic from chilled pie and scoop whipped cream on top. Spread with a spoon as desired.
10. To make salted caramel, place sugar and water in a small saucepan over high heat. Let cook without stirring until mixture turns amber color and bubbles are small. Immediately remove from heat and, standing back, whisk in cream, butter, and salt. Whisk until smooth and cool slightly. Drizzle over whipped cream on pie or over individual pieces of pie before serving.