Happy Thanksgiving! Today’s post will be short and sweet, since I imagine many of you guys will be either in the kitchen and/or spending much-needed time with your family or friends. In any case, that’s the way it should be.
Since my family isn’t American, I’ve never really celebrated Thanksgiving. I guess Erlend and I have been dating long enough that we’ve started our own traditions, which is that we roast a duck instead of turkey (since neither of us are particularly big fans of the latter). This year, with two additional housemates in tow, we’ve created an Asian-style feast to accompany the duck, including char siu buns, momofuku-style brussels sprouts, and this chocolate and pumpkin pie. And yes, while the chocolate and pumpkin pie is admittedly out of place, I wanted to make one as an homage to a more traditional Thanksgiving. Oh, and because it is delicious.
And of course, this year, I’m thankful for:
Finally finding a home for myself in Portland, OR. And I don’t mean that just in the literal sense (because, yes, I did buy an actual house this year, and my goodness I’m incredibly grateful for that too), but in the greater sense — after three lonely years in three unfamiliar cities, it’s a relief to really, truly know that Portland is where I want to be.
- Chocolate lovers, this pumpkin pie is for you. The pie’s main flavors — pumpkin, chocolate and cinnamon — combine together and remind me of Mexican chocolate. The pumpkin and cinnamon give the chocolate just a little bit of a subtle, spicy kick.
- If you can’t find chocolate graham crackers, use Oreos that have been scraped free of frosting. Similarly, if you want a more contrasting pie (as opposed to a monotone pie like you see in the pictures — all chocolate everything for life!), use regular graham crackers.
- I put chocolate chips in the filling because I love the contrasting texture that they give (they retain their shape when baked) when biting into the creamy pie filling and the crunchy crust. If you prefer a completely smooth pie filling, omit the chocolate chips.
- This pie can be played in two ways — you can either have an all black, double layered pie like I did where it’s chocolate up top, and orange pumpkin in the bottom (if this is what you want, follow the recipe below) or you can create a pie with marbled chocolate and pumpkin top. If you want a marbled pie, drop the chocolate pie filling in large blobs in different parts of the pie, and use a wooden skewer or a toothpick to gently drag the chocolate through the pumpkin to create a swirling effect.
Chocolate Pumpkin Pie
For the Chocolate Crust
- 9 ounces chocolate graham cracker
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
For the Chocolate and Pumpkin Pie Filling
- 15 ounces (1 can) pumpkin puree
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, plus more for garnish
- 1/3 cup bittersweet chocolate chips, plus more fore garnish
- Preheat the oven to 350 (F). Prepare a 9-inch pie plate by spraying liberally with cooking spray and place the prepared pie plate on a sheet pan.
- Combine 9 ounces chocolate graham crackers, 1/4 cup granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon kosher salt in a food processor and pulse in short intervals until the graham crackers have fully crumbled and you have a mixture with the consistency of sand. Transfer to a heatproof bowl, and slowly stir in 1/2 cup (1 stick) melted butter, using a rubber spatula to toss the crumbs together until you have the consistency of wet sand.
- Transfer the moist crumbs to your prepared 9-inch pie pan. Use your palms and/or the back of your hand to press the crumbs onto the bottom and up the sides of the plate to create an even, consistent layer. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a freestanding electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, combine 15 ounces pumpkin puree, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, 2 eggs, and 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream. Whisk on low speed until just combined and the mixture becomes a uniform, pale orange color.
- Transfer 1/2 cup of the pumpkin filling into a small bowl, preferably a liquid measuring cup with a spout. Pour 1/3 cup chocolate chips into the larger bowl of pumpkin filling, before pouring over the prepared pie crust in pie plate. Set aside.
- Whisk 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder into the pumpkin filling until it is a uniform brown — at first the cocoa powder will sit up top the filling and refuse to integrate, so be sure to whisk vigorously.
- Pour the chocolate-flavored pumpkin filling on top of orange pumpkin filling in the pie crust, starting in the center and spiraling out towards the edges. At first, the chocolate filling should leave a spiral trail, but the chocolate will expand and cover the top of the orange filling, turning the entire pie a uniform chocolate color.
- Bake the pie in the preheated oven for 50 to 60 minutes. Be careful not to overbake! When the pie is finished baking, the edges will have set but it will still be slightly jiggly in the center — the pie will continue to set as it cools. Transfer the finished pie to a wire rack to cool completely, before garnishing with unsweetened cocoa powder before serving.
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