Dave’s Spumoni Pie

Cooked up on November 29, 2011

Filed under: baking, dessert, fall, holiday, vegetarian

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After several different concepts and practice pies, Dave decided to make a spumoni pie for the annual contest at his work. And it is delicious.

Check it out. Chocolate crust, and hidden under that delectable, homemade cherry pie filling? A layer of pistachios, sweet and gooey.

After a few trials, here’s what Dave ended up putting in his pie.

  • One pie crust, with two tablespoons of cocoa substituted for the same of flour
  • About 1.5 cups of ground pistachios
  • 2-3 Tbsp. corn syrup
  • Homemade cherry pie filling

And in that homemade cherry pie filling:

  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups frozen cherries
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. almond extract

Make your crust, being careful to take out the 2 tbsp. of flour and add in 2 of cocoa, and allow it to rest in the fridge for at least an hour, but a day is better. Roll it out between two saran sheets to about 1/8 of an inch, and then remove the top Saran Wrap sheet. Place the pie dish upside down on top, and flip both the dish and the crust over.

For the cherry pie filling, combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil for about two minutes, so the mixture thickens a bit. Don’t freak out if your pie isn’t super-bright red – it probably won’t be. That bright red color is courtesy of food coloring much of the time.

While the pie filling is cooling, shell and grind your pistachios. You’ll want 1 cup to 1.5 cups after they’ve been ground (the volume will reduce significantly).

Add the corn syrup a tablespoon at a time until the nuts are more of a paste, and add that paste to the bottom layer of the pie.

They will spread out as they cook and become delicious goo, so don’t worry if they don’t spread perfectly. Then spread the cherry pie filling on top.

Cook the pie at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes – the crust should be solid and the cherry filling on top should have set up.

I really love the idea of this pie – it seems obvious now, but what we realized while making the pie was that pistachios are just like any other nut – say, pecan, that has been filling pies for years. They react the exact same way to heat and sugar. Besides the inconvenience of shelling them, there’s really no reason not to have a pie that is full of just pistachios. Maybe we’ll try that sometime soon.

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