Friday, March 14, 2014

National Pi Day! Malted Milk Ball Chocolate Pie "Whoppers Pie"

Today is International Pi Day. Pi Day is an annual celebration commemorating the mathematical constant Pi. Pi has been calculated to over one trillion digits beyond its decimal point. As an irrational and transcendental number, it will continue infinitely without repetition or pattern. Pi Day is observed on March 14 (or 3/14), since 3, 1 and 4 are the three most significant digits of Pi in the decimal form. In 2009, the U.S. House of Representatives supported the designation of Pi Day.

I like to celebrate National "Pi" Day  with Pie! Don't you? Want to make these pies extra fun? Make your "Pie" in a "Pi" Plate.

Today for Pi Day, I'm posting a recipe (see below) for Malted Milk Ball Chocolate Pie, recipe adapted from Angie via Family Dollar. I love Whoppers, but any malted milk ball candy will work!

If you're like me, you've always wondered about Malted Milk Balls. What are they really?


Lots of companies make them now, but when I was growing up, I only remember one: Hershey's Whoppers Malted Milk Balls.  But there are other "old fashioned' brands such as Maltesers.  Maybe they weren't available at my candy store? Ghirardelli makes Milk Chocolate Malt Balls.  (There's also a Kittymalt Hairball remedy that I have, but I won't go there).

Malt balls (interchangeable with malted balls but not moth balls!) are also available in a variety of flavors: There are pumpkin spice malted milk balls, dark chocolate milk balls, mint malted milk balls, cookies and cream malted milk balls, peanut butter malted milk balls and yogurt malted milk balls, and many other varities. Want to just have the Malt Ball center:  Nuts on Line sells them for $3.99 a pound.  These malt ball center only candies can be enrobed in the very best chocolate. You can do it yourself in the same way you make chocolate covered nuts. Just melt some chocolate and dip. I use two forks to make it easy. Dry them on a parchment lined baking sheet.

But what is a malt ball? wiseGeek (clear answers for common questions) has the answer
Malted milk balls are chocolate-coated candies often sold in milk carton packaging to promote their association with flavored milk and malted milkshakes.

The flavor of malted milk balls is often described as nutty or distinctively hearty, much like a grain cereal. The reason for this unusual flavor is the use of a grain treatment known as malting. Barley grains are allowed to germinate after harvest, which changes the sugar composition of the grain, in the same sense that germinated corn becomes more suitable for distillation. The malted barley grain is carefully dried and ground into a powder for confectionery use.

Malted Milk Ball Chocolate Pie

Ingredients for Pie:
2 cups sugar
6 Tbsp unsweetened dark cocoa powder
1/4 cup flour
12 ounces evaporated milk
2 tsp Madagascar vanilla extract
4 egg yolks, whisked together
1/4 cup sweet butter
1 cup crushed malted milk balls (Whoppers)
1 pre-made graham cracker crust (or make your own.. it's so easy to do)

Ingredients for topping:
4 egg whites
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup chopped malted milk balls (Whoppers)

Pre-heat oven to 350F.
In medium saucepan, whisk together sugar, unsweetened cocoa powder and flour. Add in vanilla, egg yolks, and evaporated milk. Whisk together. Add in 1/4 cup butter and heat on medium heat. Whisk until tbutter melts, about 5 minutes. Add in crushed malted milk balls and whisk for 1-2 minutes. Pour into graham cracker crust. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Let cool for about 10 minutes.

With electric mixer, mix egg whites until soft peaks form. Add in 1/4 cup of sugar and mix on high for 2-3 minutes until stiff peaks form. Spread over top of the pie and bake at 350F for about 8 minutes or until browned slightly. Let cool and add chopped malted milk balls (whoppers) to top of pie.

Let pie sit for about 30 minutes before cutting.

And here's a link to Thrillist's 16 greatest pies in the nation. Missing your favorite? Enter a comment below.


Mae Travels said...

I'm disappointed that the malted milk balls are crushed so you can't see their perfectly circular cross-section! But it sounds delicious.

Janet Rudolph said...

Mae, you can always decorate with the malt balls on top.