My boyfriend's favorite dessert is without a doubt coconut cream pie or anything creamy and coconuty. He spotted a coconut cream pie at the local grocery store one afternoon and exclaimed that he would purchase it on Monday to eat. I told him that would be ridiculous - of course I would make one! Any opportunity to work on baking is more than welcomed into my daily activities, especially something I don't have much (or any) experience in, pies and pie crust.
I knew my woman, Martha, would have a perfect recipe for me in her Baking Handbook where her decadant, classic recipes enchant my baking soul with elegant photos and wonderfully written pre-recipe descriptions and stories. The first task was crust. I was bit intimidating having never solely made a scratch crust; pie crusts have a notorious stigma attached them of being difficult to work with. I chose (as suggested by Martha) Pâté Brisée, a classic french pastry crust for pies, simply contain unsalted butter, salt and ice water.
Simple, right? I followed the directions trying to use not too much water because I didn't want the crust to be tough but in the end more would have been better.
When I went to roll out the crust the next day; it crumbled on the counter top. Although alarmed, I kept my composure and just added more water and continued to roll it out, hoping for the best. Of course after adding the water it was a bit too sticky so, I added a bit more flour as I rolled. Nothing close to perfect, I folded the pie dough into my pan; some of the ends on the round were thicker than others causing a shotty looking design as a I pinched the edges.
I remained persistant and turned out the coconut custard with ease and it was quite fun. I whipped my cream which I thought was kind of bland and a bit soft. I wanted it to be thick, tasty and bountiful but it just was kind of, cream, that was whipped.
Well, all and all, I know Martha's the queen of baking so it was my lack of expierience that rendered this pie to our eyes and taste buds as good and not earth shattering-orgasmically-amazing. I followed the recipe exactly (minus brushing the bottom with metled chocolate) and it is quite long ,so I won't post it. You can easily find this recipe in Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook or on her website. Next time, I think I'll try a more traditional diner style cream pie recipe (although I'm not sure of the differences) because I think that is style I'm looking for in this pie. I'll also be practicing my Pâté Brisée technique in the meantime.