Saturday, July 26, 2008

Cream Puff Pie (aka "Best Custard Pie")

Baking date: 7/25/08

Melissa, Minh-Chau and I made a custard pie (based off of my aunt's "Best Custard Pie" recipe) last night. SO GOOD--and so easy to make!

Whoops...somehow we ended up with too much filling (we didn't even add all of what we made).

Wait--there's a story, as there almost always is whenever I bake (I tend to screw up a lot). We weren't sure what kind of pie or cupcakes we were making until they got here, but we decided to go with this custard one, which is more like a giant cream puff than a custard pie. I got this recipe from my aunt because she made this several years ago for New Year's or Christmas or something. Unfortunately, I didn't read the recipe until we started baking in my we had to make a few substitutions and adjustments. First, I didn't go down to get milk and eggs before Melissa and Minh-Chau came over (stupid!) so we all went downstairs to the little convenience store right on the corner for eggs cuz we didn't think we'd need milk. Then we realized the pudding requires milk and that you gotta make the pudding several hours before you bake the crust (so that the pudding is cold and hard). So we decided to cheat and use ready-made Handi-Snacks Vanilla Pudding (lol in the little individual cups), which I now think is kinda gross. Anyway, we mixed that with the one other filling ingredient (real whipped cream) and sped up to the crust-cooling process too by taking it out of the pan and onto a plate and into the freezer. That all worked out pretty well; it still tasted really good! You just can't think about the pudding part too much (unless you like the taste of Handi-Snacks pudding). I'm still pretty happy!

Oh! And I have to mention that we didn't have a mixer so Melissa whipped the cream by hand!! That was way cool.

Whipping cream in liquid form:

Getting closer...

THERE! *Let me remind you that Melissa did this by hand!*

Next time, I'll prep appropriately (i.e., make and refrigerate the pudding earlier). Can't wait to try it again!

Recipe for Cream Puff Crust:

1/2 cup boiling water
1/4 cup Crisco shortening
1/8 tsp. salt
1/2 cup flour
2 large or 3 small eggs

1. Mix boiling water, shortening, salt & flour over flame/heat.
2. Keep stirring until it rolls off sides & forms a ball
3. Remove from fire/heat.
4. Cool 5 minutes
5. Beat in eggs, one at a time, and beat by hand (fold) until smooth and velvety.
6. Place in 9-inch well-greased pie pan and spread out so it is 1/4 inch up on sides.
7. Bake 15-20 minutes in 400-degree oven.
8. Cool on shelf in pan it was baked in. It won't get soggy so you can bake it the night before.

Recipe for Filling:

1 family size instant vanilla pudding
1 cup whipping cream

1. In the morning to be served, make pudding following instructions on package for pie (will not set if overbeaten).
2. Whip cream and divide in half.
3. Fold half the whipped cream into the filling and save the other half for topping.
4. Put pudding filling in cooked, cooled shell.
5. Cover the top with the remaining whipped cream.
6. Chill.
7. Serve.

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