Bite-sized Chocolate Cream Pies

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Ok, so these little beauties haven’t photographed quite as well as I’d have liked. The reason is two fold.

1. I still have zero idea what I’m doing when it comes to my fancy pants camera.

2. I kept eating them with one hand while trying to photograph them with the other.

I made a big version for my sisters new years eve party and I am constantly looking for a new reason to make them. Luckily we had friends round for dinner the other week. Unfortunately they were far better at making 2014 healthy, than I was. So I decided that I would just make baby versions, because if its small its calorie free, right?

 The chocolate pudding isn’t hard to make, so don’t be frightened. Its just time consuming and you have to make sure you give it your full attention. I gave it so much attention when I looked to see were my puppy dog was she was 1 foot deep in mud in the garden and had dug up my freshly laid turf……. I looked at my muddy dog and my ruined garden and then I looked at my super smooth liquid heaven chocolate…….totally worth it.

The recipe is adapted from How Sweet Eats, the place I spend most of my free time, and I was scared making the pudding, but I didn’t need to be. Jess guides me to rich chocolate nirvana.

I made mine with digestive (gram cracker) base and plain whipped cream.

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You need to let them set before you add the cream or the cream sinks into the chocolate. This I can assure you is not a bad thing, if, like me, you plan to just crush them into your mouth. If you want to serve them to someone other than yourself refrigerate them before adding the cream.  I added a tiny bit of cinnamon to my base mixture and it brought all kinds of incredibleness from the biscuits. I could taste ginger even though I hadn’t added any, the base took on an amazing caramelised taste. Dave described them as biscuits on crack. I couldn’t argue…. I had a mouth full of chocolate cream pie base wedged in my mouth.

The whole process is time consuming but it really is worth it. If you want to make it like a big pie, use a 9″ loose bottom tin and bake the base for 9-11 minutes, also chilling the filling will take much longer. How Sweet Eats recommends 4 hours.

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Make sure when you whip your cream you don’t over whip. I’ve always been told to whip by hand. This is excruciatingly painful and hard work. But worth it. The cream goes from not whipped to over whipped in three turns of the whisk, so doing it by machine means its almost impossible not to over whip. I’ve got one lovely strong arm with Dwayne Johnson type muscles. This is unfortunate. Lightly whipped cream is definitely worth it though.

Bitesized Chocolate Cream Pie
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Base
  1. 370g /13 ounces Digestive Biscuits (Gram Crackers)
  2. 140g /5 ounces Unsalted Butter - melted plus more for greasing the muffin tin
  3. 100g /1/2 cup Brown Sugar
  4. 1/8 teaspoon Cinnamon
  5. 1/8 teaspoon Salt
Chocolate Pudding Filling
  1. 200g / 1 cup light brown sugar
  2. 414ml / 1 3/4 cups cold double cream - I'd measure out 400mg then add in 1 tbsp more. Split the cream in half. Half for the chocolate filling and half for the top.
  3. 180ml / 3/4 cup buttermilk
  4. 20g / 2 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoon cornflour (cornstartch)
  5. 1/8 teaspoon salt
  6. 4 egg yolks
  7. 113g / 4 ounces really good chocolate, chopped - I used 3/4 Dark and 1/4 Milk chocolate
  8. 15g / 1 tablespoons butter
  9. 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
  10. Extra chocolate for grating over the top
Filling
  1. Add the sugar, half the cream, buttermilk, cornflour and salt to a large heavy bottomed pan over medium heat.
  2. Whisk continually until the sugar has dissolved and there are no cornflour lumps.
  3. Make sure to get right into the edges of the pan to make sure there is no sticking.
  4. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally, until it thickens a little.
  5. Turn the heat down and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. In a small bowl, whisk egg yolks and slowly pour in 1/2 cup (about 100ml) of the warm milk mixture into the egg yolks, stirring continuously. Pour the egg yolk mixture back into the saucepan with the milk and heat over medium heat, stirring constantly.
  7. Stir until it is combined and really think this should take around 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the mixture from the heat and pour it into a bowl. Stir in the chocolate, butter and vanilla until, chocolate is melted its all combined, and looks like a thick, shiny pool of chocolate. Cover with a piece of cling film, directly on top of the chocolate pudding and allow it to chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Base
  1. In a food processor mix all the ingredients for the base until it a fine crumb. Try to smoosh (technical term) a small amount between for fingers, if it sticks together your good to go, if not add a tablespoon of water and blend again until mixed together.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180oC / 350oF or Gas Mark 6.
  3. Grease two 12 hole muffin trays (or do it one tray at a time) with a little melted butter,dish out the crumb mixture out evenly between a muffin tray. I used a teaspoon to push the crumbs along the bottom and up the sides of each hole.
  4. Bake in the oven for 6 - 7 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
  6. Using a butter knife, ease each biscuit case out of the tin and put on flat surface ready for filling.
Assembly
  1. Once the chocolate mixture is cool, top your biscuit bases with the chocolate pudding. I found a heaped tablespoon was enough. Place your now topped bases back in the fridge for a further hour.
  2. Whip the cream, best done with cold, cold cream and in a wide bottomed bowl.
  3. Top your pies with a tablespoon of cream and grate over some extra chocolate.
  4. Keep in the fridge until your ready to eat. Mine lasted until 10am the next morning. So I cant comment on how much longer they'll keep.
Notes
  1. It takes a while to make these, but it is a lot of it sitting in the fridge, so its free time really.
  2. I used a whisk and a spoon when making the filling. I whisk until no lumps and then use a spoon to get into the edges of the pan.
Adapted from How Sweet Eats
Adapted from How Sweet Eats
Pestosprouts http://pestosprouts.com/
 

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