Caramel Chocolate Coconut -&- Cookie Mind E'splosion Pie (aka "Samoa cookie pie")
I don’t know about you, but I can never leave anything half-baked. Whether it be projects or pies, I want to make sure I get them just right. These past few weeks I have been perfecting, perfecting, perfecting. I am currently job searching so I am constantly revising my resume, trying to get just the right words on paper that will make an employer say “ooo”. I have also been involved with a local community theatre production of Urinetown the musical and have been focused on the perfect performance for each audience.
Meanwhile, I have been trying to perfect a Caramel Chocolate Coconut Cookie Mind E'splosion Pie (which bears a large resemblance to a Samoa cookie sold by those little seemingly innocent purveyors of evil addictive cookie sweetness). Having missed out on the local girls taking cookie orders, I decided to make my own Samoas. In fact, I decided to one-up them and make a Samoa cookie PIE…and not one of those pies that just use Samoa cookies…a pie that would resemble a GIANT COOKIE. Don’t tell anyone I’m pretending a Bobby Flay Samoa throw down with some 8 year olds.
I tested each version of this pie with the biggest Samoa cookie addicts I know. Each version was yummy, yummy, omg, but wasn’t quite right. Third time’s the charm and this super-sized turbo version of a French Coconut Pie came out the victor. Don’t be afraid of all the ingredients…I found it less daunting if I made the caramel and toasted coconut the night before. The rest of the steps just flow like buttah. Enjoy, my little cookie fiends!
Caramel Chocolate Coconut Cookie Mind E'splosion Pie
I don’t know about you, but I think there is nothing better than sticky, sweet sauces to drizzle on, to dip in, or to lick off your fingers while making a happy mess of yourself during dessert.
When dreaming of my Samoa Pie (a la the Girl Scout cookies bearing the same name) I knew I would need caramel sauce for my topping. Looking up recipes online I could see I had three choices….
Buy pre-made caramel sauce
Buy caramels and melt them
Make my own caramel sauce
While the first two options would have been easy peasy, I decided to make my own caramel sauce. After all, this whole pie experiment is about…well just that; failures, successes and kitchen adventures. What kind of adventure would heating up already made caramel be?
Simply Recipes has a wonderful blog entry on how to make caramel sauce. Her pictures and tips were so great, I would happily make caramel again and again. Can we say caramel covered ice cream sundaes all summer?
My friend Teva is awesome and makes super yummy recipes (like bread where you could just sit and eat the whole loaf). Yesterday she shared a Vegan Shepherd’s Pie that sounded great and I couldn’t help but reblog. Thanks Teva!
It’s cold. Slush is falling from the sky & standing in the street inches deep. There is no way to cross the street gracefully.
On the way home, I picked up a mess of lovely vegetables. I was going to make soup, my ultimate comfort food. Then I decided not to be so selfish, since soup is the opposite of D.’s favourite, so I thought again.
I decided to make a simple, savoury vegan shepherd’s pie. Here’s what I did.
2 medium potatoes
1 red pepper - diced
1 green pepper - diced
1 small red onion - diced
6 cloves garlic - minced
1 stalk broccoli - diced
1 big handful of broad beans - diced
Vegan Worcestershire sauce
Red Hawaiian salt
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F
Wash the potatoes, then dice them & steam them. Once steamed, toss in a bowl with olive oil, nutritional yeast, cracked pepper, red salt & daiya cheddar. Mash. Add your choice of vegan milk or water if it’s too thick, then set aside.
Meanwhile, saute onion & garlic in olive oil until translucent. Add the red wine, Worchestershire sauce, pepper, salt, cayenne & honey. Stir in the remaining vegetables & saute them.
Take a big pie dish, and fill it with yummy sauteed vegetables. Spread the mashed potatoes on top, then pop it in the oven. Let it bake for about 45 minutes, until the top is golden brown.
On this new blogging adventure I have been oh-so-lucky to have amazing supporters in my circle of friends. One of the biggest has been my friend Jenn Pedde who is a super, awesome, smart social media cookie and a great partner in (totally legal) crime. When I lost my job due to the economy last year, she has been my sounding board, a great advice giver and she said, “You can come over to my kitchen!” when I told her I’d be doing a whole lot more baking with my new found time.
In December, Jenn got an awesome opportunity to work in NYC, but that meant she’d be leaving her friends and family here. We got to pretend to be in denial for a few months as she worked from home, but next week we will officially be saying “see ya later” as she moves to Hipstertown Brooklyn.
Due to her fancy and new, jet-setting job she’s always missed the pie fairy, but we finally pinned a date down and spent a wonderful night with some of our mutual friends we met through Twitter (Yes, you can meet totally awesome people from Twitter in real life!), sharing pie for dinner and dessert, laughs and #OMGfacts about ourselves.
For the main event, we ate a chicken almond pie concocted from another delicious recipe from BBC Good Food Magazine and ended the night with another round of peanut butter and chocolate pie (which you can never get enough of).
Don’t be scared by the ingredient list below…all of the spices are very common and the only thing I had never bought before was the orange oil. Cut down prep time by starting the chicken and then cooking the almonds simultaneously. It totally helps if you have great sous chefs like Jenn and our friend Kim (who also played the role of photographer when silly me forgot my camera).
Chicken Almond Pie or Nutty Chicken or CHICKEN LOCO..ok..ok…too far
1 double flaky crust
1 egg yolk, beaten
2 Tbsp olive oil
4 shallots finely chopped
3 large boneless chicken breasts
1 tsp finely chopped garlic
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp turmeric
2 cups chicken stock
2 Tbsp freshly chopped parsley
2 Tbsp freshly chopped coriander
5 tsp granulated sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 Tbsp flour
2 Tbsp olive oil
7 oz. blanched almonds
2 Tbsp confectionery sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 Tbsp orange blossom water (or a couple drops of orange oil diluted in the water)