This month I was assigned I am a Honey Bee by Nicole. I had a brilliant time on Nicole's blog and found even though we live on opposite sides of the world we actually have a lot in common (apart from just a love of food and cooking) - we are both detail oriented, hate the cold, are morning people, think eggs Benedict is the best way to eat eggs and love Buffy the Vampire Slayer (I binge-watched the entire series again when Oscar was a baby and I was stuck on the couch feeding).
I also found similar food journeys and she has completed not one but two rounds of the Whole30. I eat pretty cleanly (no sugar or dairy and reduced grain) most of the time and am really keen to give it a go. I have bookmarked a few of Nicole's Whole30 posts to re-read when I do finally take the plunge.
So what did I end up choosing? Well it was really tough to choose and I narrowed it down to 3 - Lemony Raspberry Zucchini Bread with a Lemony Glaze, Paleo Waffled Breakfast Sandwiches and
Chocolate Chess Pie.
In the end I couldn't go past the Chocolate Chess Pie because I have seen the name around for years and wondered what on earth it had to do with chess! After a bit of research I am none the wiser (there seem to be at least 3 distinct explanations) but I am delighted to have made this delicious chocolate pie. I love that this one has cocoa powder rather than chocolate which makes it cheaper and easier to whip up.
I did make a few substitutions like using coconut oil instead of shortening in the pastry and some rice malt syrup instead of just sugar in the filling.
The taste test? It was completely delicious. The top was crispy and crackly while underneath was creamy, chocolatey and sweet without being too rich. The pastry was light and flaky and I loved the slight hint of coconut with the chocolate. The pastry was a little underdone in the middle although the filling was perfect so next time I would blind bake the pastry first to make it extra crisp.
Chocolate Chess Pie
Slightly Adapted from I am a Honey Bee
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1/2 ts salt
60g coconut oil, very cold and cut into pieces
60g butter, very cold and cut into pieces
4-6 tablespoons ice water
2/3 cup rice malt syrup
1/4 cup raw cacao powder
1/2 teaspoon instant coffee powder (optional)
4 tbs butter, melted and slightly cooled
1 ts vanilla extract
2 eggs, lightly beaten
To make the crust:
Grease a 9 inch pie dish and set aside. Keep the butter and coconut oil in the fridge until ready to use.
Place the flour and salt in a food processor fitted with the dough blade and pulse a few times to combine. Add the coconut oil and butter and pulse until the mixture is crumbly. Gradually add enough ice water to the mixture while pulsing until a ball of dough is about formed.
Tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Press into a disc then wrap in plastic and place in the fridge for 20 minutes.
Once chilled place the dough back on a floured surface and roll out to approx 3mm thick. Add more flour if it starts to stick to the bench while you’re rolling.
Press onto the base and sides of the prepared pie dish and trim and crimp the edges as needed. Cover the pie plate with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to overnight.
To make the pie:
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C / 350 degrees F.
Using a stand mixer or large bowl with electric beaters, beat together the cacao, sugar, coffee powder, melted butter and syrup and beat on high speed.
Add the vanilla extract and eggs and mix on high for approximately 2-3 minutes.
Pour the mixture into the unbaked pie shell and bake for 35-40 minutes. The centre of the pie will still be a little soft but it will firm up as it cools. Leave on a wire rack for at least an hour before slicing. I baked mine the day before and stored in the fridge then left at room temperature for 1 hour before serving.
Thanks Nicole for a great recipe and great month!