I was intrigue by an article in the Chicago Sun-Times last month "Bridal couples choosing wedding pie, not cake," and I started thinking about chocolate and chocolate related pies that would work for a wedding. We all know cupcakes often replace cakes at weddings, but how about pie? and how many pies? what kind of pies? Just so you know, this isn't really new this year. Wedding pies have been popular for quite some time. Just new to me. So my motto is "let them eat pie."
Wedding cake is a big part of the budget, and cost is usually by the slice. Of course, it's traditional to have a wedding cake and a groom's cake--for the photos. Don't even go there with pie! But wedding pies can be quite versatile and less expensive. There are so many flavors and styles. Berry Pie with lattice, with a second crust, nuts, fruit, combos, with cream, lemon chiffon, key lime, chocolate chip cookie pie..I mean it's really endless. I even saw a photo of a three tier wedding pork pie with a bride and groom on top. I do like pie. Lots of chocolate pies out there, too, but I'll get there.
Wedding pies can be stacked on tiers, having the similitude of a cake. Some 'wedding pie' bakers arrange a large pie as a centerpiece with varieties around the central pie. Wedding Pies can be presented on silver tiers or glass stands. They can be centerpieces for each table. And, here's a good idea--guests can be sent home with a tart or slice of pie. (There are pie slice baking pans). Of course there's the problem of year old frozen pie for the anniversary. I don't think it would hold up well.
Want a white wedding? Limit your pies to cream-topped or meringues. You can even put a bride and groom on top--in the pastry or riding high on meringue waves. Bake the initials of the bride and groom in the pastry or spell out something or have other shapes. And, the groom's cake which is usually chocolate (red velvet) can be a chocolate silk--or the groom can pick his favorite kind of pie. So why pie? Pie is moist where cake can be arid. So many kinds of crusts, too: flaky, graham, oreo (yes), bready, fatty, fried, crumbly, airy. Anyway, as I mentioned, there are so many variety of pies, and everyone loves pie. If you put a different pie at each table, it would encourage guests to mingle. The ideas are endless.
Of course, a whole other idea for Wedding Pie would be Cheescake. Cheesecake is not cake. It's pie. So you could have wedding cheesecakes. Several cheesecakes that stacks as in layers or different smaller varieties. Cheesecake is not an uncommon wedding 'cake.' I've been to several weddings with cheesecake wedding 'cakes.'
Sugar pie, Honey Bunch.. I can't help myself.. Make mine chocolate pie.
An Easy CHOCOLATE SILK PIE from cooks.com
1 unbaked single pie crust
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In large, microwave-safe bowl, melt chocolate chips and butter at 50% power for 2 minutes until butter is melted; stir until smooth, Whisk in salt, sugar, cocoa powder, eggs, evaporated milk and vanilla extract, whisk until well blended. Pour chocolate mixture into crust. (Bake the pie shell 8 minutes in preheated 350 degree oven before filling shell)
Bake 30 minutes or until filling has puffed, but center still wiggles. Cool completely. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Garnish with whipped cream and chocolate shavings.
And a fabulous Deep Dark Chocolate Cheesecake to die for...
Deep Dark Chocolate Cheesecake from Bon Appetit (October 2006) by Jeanne Thiel Kelley. Reprinted on Epicurious.com
24 chocolate wafer cookies (from one 9-ounce package)
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
1 9.7-ounce bar Scharffen Berger 70% Cocoa Bittersweet Chocolate,* chopped
4 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (preferably Scharffen Berger)
4 large eggs
3/4 cup whipping cream
6 ounces Scharffen Berger 70% Cocoa Bittersweet Chocolate,* chopped
1 tablespoon sugar
* Bittersweet chocolate curls
Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter 9-inch-diameter springform pan with 3-inch-high sides. Blend cookies in processor until finely ground; blend in sugar. Add melted butter and process until well blended. Press crumbs evenly onto bottom (not sides) of prepared pan. Bake just until set, about 5 minutes. Cool while preparing filling. Maintain oven temperature.
Stir chopped chocolate in metal bowl set over saucepan of simmering water until melted and smooth. Remove bowl from over water; cool chocolate until lukewarm but still pourable. Blend cream cheese, sugar, and cocoa powder in processor until smooth. Blend in eggs 1 at a time. Mix in lukewarm chocolate. Pour filling over crust; smooth top. Bake until center is just set and just appears dry, about 1 hour. Cool 5 minutes. Run knife around sides of cake to loosen. Chill overnight.
Stir cream, 6 ounces chocolate, and sugar in heavy medium saucepan over low heat until smooth. Cool slightly. Pour over center of cheesecake, spreading to within 1/2 inch of edge and filling any cracks. Chill until topping is set, about 1 hour. Do ahead: Can be made 3 days ahead. Cover with foil and keep refrigerated.
Release pan sides. Transfer cheesecake to platter. Top with chocolate curls. Let stand 2 hours at room temperature before serving.
And, there's always Chocolate Cherry Pie!
Pie in the Sky on your Special Day!