I have started a new job this week, and I’m going to (typically) complain about how hard it is for me to get back to the working routine. It sounds incredibly spoiled, but I have gotten used to having my own schedule and being able to do whatever whenever, and this is hard for me to give up. So I am having to remind myself that I am doing this because it is something I want, and then I have to remind myself of the reasons I want it. Especially this week, when my work hours have been later than they will normally be, and as I have been sitting in a tiny room watching 1990s (and sometimes 1980s) videos about workplace safety and child development and curriculum and listening to hours long audio CDs of motivational speakers that do anything but motivate me.
So needless to say, I was very happy to have this in the fridge this week, so that last night after dinner this was already ready, to be devoured again as we did several nights ago with Gerrit’s family. (I’m so glad every person didn’t want a full slice.)
I’ve never been particularly prone to wanting chess pie because they tend to be in flavors I don’t care for like lemon, or just plain old chess pie which had never seemed particularly exciting. So I’m not sure why I really felt the need to make this, especially considering that it mostly looked, judging from the baked top of the pie, to be like a brownie. But then again, I thought, surely with such a small amount of flour there is a difference.
And oh my goodness was there. There was nothing cake or brownie like about this pie. It was all gooey chocolate custard, rich in such a dark and delicious way. It was heavy and dense and sugary, which is why full slices were a bit too much, but it melted on your tongue and and left you savoring every bite to its fullest extent. We ate it slightly warm, just after it had cooled from the oven for a couple of hours. But it was still stunning in chilled form and left me wanting nothing else (even though, wait, I did make something else, and just wait until I tell you about it).
Chocolate Chess Pie
adapted from Southern Living Magazine November 2011
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Bake Time: 50 minutes
Wait Time: 1 hour
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 (14.1 oz.) pie crust (or make your own)
1/2 cup butter
2 (1 oz.) unsweetened chocolate baking squares
1 (5 oz.) can evaporated milk
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. In a medium sized bowl, combine sugar, cocoa powder, flour, and salt. Set aside.*
3. Lightly flour a board or counter top. Roll pie dough out into a 12 inch circle. Fit into a 9-inch pie plate. Fold the edges under (or cut off particularly excessive edges) and then crimp edges.
4. In a large microwave-safe bowl, heat butter and chocolate squares in microwave until chocolate is melted, about 1 1/2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds.
5. Add evaporated milk, eggs, and vanilla to chocolate, whisking until combined. Then whisk in sugar mixture.
6. Pour mixture into the prepared pie crust.
7. Bake pie for 40-50 minutes, until set. Remove from oven and allow to cool for at least one hour.
*I say do this first even though you don’t need it until later so that you get as much done as possible before you roll your pie crust. The colder the pie crust, the better.