Thursday, July 4, 2013

FRENCH COCONUT PIE . . . The easiest pie in the WORLD

This time I baked it in a tart pan, you just need to check it after about 30 minutes because it is thinner and cooks faster.
I have always loved pie, and actually enjoy making them even more than I enjoy eating them. I spent some time in my early 20s living in Santa Barbara and working as a nanny/housepacker for Tom and Pat Harding, long time friends and colleagues of the Deetz family. I have no idea where Pat got this recipe, but I do remember cherishing the index card I had the recipe on, and made sure to copy it into the inside pages of more than a few cookbooks so I would not lose it. IT IS TRULY ONE OF THE EASIEST PIES YOU WILL EVER MAKE!
 
Cool completely before cutting
 What is also great about this pie, is that you can keep all the ingredients on hand long term, so you can have the ingredients on hand and make this on a whim.
 
It fills a small crust, a basic 8" crust. You can make your own, buy a frozen one, a premade one you roll out, or even save some calories and bake it crustless. I used to use the roll out pillsbury crusts but found out they have lard in them. Most frozen ones do as well. While I have no qualms about lard, many people I cook for do not eat meat, so I stopped using them. Trader Joe's has a version with butter, and they are difficult to use, as they seem to crack often, even when at room temperature, but they come in two layers of plastic, and I have solved that issue by rolling the crust again, keeping them between the plastic, and rejoining the cracks. But it is also easy to learn how to make crust from scratch.
 
Crust fit into a tart pan with a removable bottom
 This pie is great a day after it is made, so it is great for pot lucks where you need something easy to make ahead of time.

French Coconut Pie

1 stick of butter. melted
1-1/4 c sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 Tblsp. white vinegar
3 whole eggs, lightly beaten
3-1/2 oz flaked coconut

1 unbaked pie crust

It is easy because it all goes in one bowl
Mix thoroughly and pour into an unbaked 8" pie shell. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour. Filling should be set in the center when done, but not too set. not jiggly. Really the best the second day so its great as a make ahead pie. coconut haters have been known to love this pie.

Just stir completely and pour into the uncooked pie shell

You want it to bake until the top gets nice and golden brown, creating a chewy, kind of macaroony layer on the top. I believe this is very much like a southern chess pie, which is a firm custardy egg based filling without cream or milk added to it. This one is fairly chewy throughout because it is so full of coconut.

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