It’s Pie Party Day


No one needs a reason to party; with pie no less.  But when I saw the many iterations of one of our favorite desserts popping up everywhere I thought I would offer my own classic.  This is a time-honored recipe for apricot cream pie that is rich with classic American technique.

This pie lends itself well to other fruit fillings as well.  Bananas are classic, mango would be a delicious twist, or use coconut milk instead of whole milk and fold with toasted coconut shavings for something completely new.  Be creative, and, above all, enjoy! 

Apricot Cream Pie
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Ingredients
  1. Fully baked pie shell
  2. 3 large eggs, separated
  3. 1 cup sugar
  4. 2 cups whole milk
  5. 1/3 cup flour
  6. 1 Tablespoon butter
  7. 1/3 cup sugar
  8. 1 cup dried apricots
  9. Orange juice
Instructions
  1. Rehydrate your apricots by chopping into quarters and placing in a heavy-bottomed pot.
  2. Pour orange juice over apricots to cover.
  3. Cook on medium-low heat until the apricots are rehydrated and plump.
  4. Remove from heat and let liquid drain.
  5. Chop the fruit very finely. Reserve this as you prepare the remaining components.
  6. Place flour, initial measure of sugar, and milk into a pot.
  7. In a separate bowl place the three egg yolks.
  8. Heat the liquid and stir frequently until the milk turns thick, then pour gently over the egg yolks while stirring constantly so as not to curdle the yolks.
  9. Whisk thoroughly to ensure these are well mixed.
  10. Return liquid to your pot and cook, whisking constantly, until it is very thick and smells sweet. If it starts to boil, remove from heat and stir quickly; the goal is to keep the eggs from curdling.
  11. Once a smooth, rich cream forms, remove from heat and add butter and any flavoring extract.
  12. Strain into a new container and let cool slightly.
  13. Mix with the apricots and pour into your pie shell(s). Shake the pie pan a bit to settle the cream into a smooth layer.
  14. Place the egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer with a whisk attachment.
  15. Add sugar.
  16. Mix on medium speed for about three minutes.
  17. Lift the bowl gently to ensure all of the sugar is incorporated.
  18. Mix on high speed for another three minutes. The meringue will start getting very fluffy and thick.
  19. Finish the meringue on the highest speed for about 45 seconds and ensure the meringue is uniformly whipped.
  20. Pipe meringue in designs and shapes with a pastry bag and tips, or smooth it on with a spatula in a spiral, or spike the whole thing with the side of a knife.
  21. Bake in a 350F oven until the meringue is golden-brown and delicious - probably 12 to 17 minutes.
  22. Remove from the oven and let cool completely on a wire rack.
Joe the Baker http://www.joe-the-baker.com/

About Joe the Baker

Joe the Baker is a classically-trained pastry chef who specializes in French macarons and viennoiserie. He currently sells his delicious confections online, at the Coppell Farmers Market, and at DFW-area gourmet grocers.

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