Every year on my brother, David's, birthday I would make and give him a pie. He LOVED pies. His face always lit up when I brought in a fresh apple or triple berry pie. What a typical guy, huh? ;)
Since his passing almost 4 years ago I have carried on this tradition. Every year on his birthday I make a pie to honor and remember him. This year for his 29th birthday I made a french silk pie.
This recipe is a Whitney family favorite. I grew up eating this pie and it still hits the spot for me today. It's light and airy (almost like a mousse) filling is rich and chocolatey and oh, so smooth! Served in a flaky, buttery pie shell with a heap of whipped cream on top is the only way to have it! Although, I could really just eat the french silk filling plain... spoonful after spoonful.
French Silk Filling:
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 heaping T. cocoa powder
1 tsp. vanilla
Beat butter until smooth. Very gradually add the sugar (about 1 T. at a time) and beat each addition until sugar is mostly dissolved. Add 1 egg and beat 4-5 minutes. Add 2nd egg and beat another 4-5 minutes. Now the mixture should be completely smooth and not grainy. Add cocoa powder and beat until completely combined. Add vanilla and combine.
Spread the silk into a cooled pie shell. Chill for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator. Cover with whipped cream, chocolate shavings, chopped nuts, etc.
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour, sifted
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. sugar
1/4 cup water, cold
Combine flour, salt and sugar in a bowl. Add shortening and cut into the dry ingredients using a pastry cutter until shortening is pea-sized. Add the ice water and stir. Mix and knead into a ball. Knead as little as possible.
Place on a lightly floured counter and press ball down gently. Sprinkle top with flour and roll out with rolling pin. Fold into quarters to transfer to pie pan. Unfold and gently press dough into pie pan. Trim edges and shape as you wish. Poke holes in shell with fork to allow steam to escape during baking.
Bake at 400ºF for 17-20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and cool completely before filling with french silk.