Thursday, June 7, 2012

Graduation and 'Possum Pie

I'm back!
  First of all I want to thank my new followers for following me, y'all make my day! (No, I'm not southern; yes, I said "y'all.")
So to fill you all in since my last post...
On May 27th I graduated from high school at TVBC, which was an honor because we moved away from the Treasure Valley in 2009 but they let me be a part of the group! I still consider it my church because we don't have a church here and I have so many friends there that keep me up to date on everything. It was a crazy busy weekend but it was soooo wonderful to get to see people and be back "home." There were 14 kids and that's a fairly large graduating class for us, we combined the homeschoolers and the church school kids. (Fun Fact: there were 4 redheads this year. I'm gonna guess that's probably never happened before.) I'm not going to post any pictures of the graduation because there are other people in the pictures and I don't want to put someone's face on here without their permission.

It's always kind of hard to come back here after a few days up there, this time it was especially hard. I'm not sure why but it definitely took longer to settle back into the routine of living in the sticks. I don't mind living here as much as I did when we first moved, and sometimes I even really enjoy it here! But I do miss a lot of things about "civilization."

What better way to snap out of a funk than staying busy and chocolate/sugar? When we got home Dad asked that we make 'Possum Pie. Now that title may sound disgusting but it's sooooooo good! I think this dessert has a lot of names: Chocolate Cheesecake, Four-Layer Dessert, Better than Robert Redford something, etc. The basic recipe calls for Cool Whip and instant Jello pudding mixes, but why settle when you can make it homemade? So here is our version of the idea. It may look really long and complicated but it's super easy :)

For the crust:

12 tablespoons butter, melted
1 1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 cup pecans, chopped

Preheat oven to 350* Combine the butter, flour and pecans to make a dough and press into the bottom of a 9x13 glass baking dish. Bake 10-15 minutes or until the crust starts to turn golden.

For the pudding:

Vanilla:

1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
dash salt
3 egg yolks
1 1/4 cup whole milk
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon vanilla

Whisk the dry ingredients in a small saucepan, then add the egg yolks and combine. Then add the milk and bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and becomes smooth. Off the heat add the butter and vanilla, whisk until smooth. Set aside.

Chocolate:

2 1/2 cups half-and-half (or whole milk)
1/3 cup sugar
pinch salt
6 egg yolks
2 tablespoons cornstarch
6 tablespoons butter, cut into 6 pieces
7 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate ( i used chocolate chips)
1 teaspoon vanilla

Bring the half-and-half, some of the sugar, and salt to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally.
As the half-and-half begins heats, whisk the egg yolks, cornstarch and remaining sugar in a medium bowl until smooth. Slowly whisk about 1 cup of the simmering half-and-half mixture into the yolk mixture to temper, then slowly whisk the tempered yolks back into the simmering saucepan. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, whisking vigorously, until the mixture is thickened and a few bubbles burst on the surface, about 30 seconds. Off the heat, whisk in the butter and chocolate until smooth and melted. Stir in the vanilla.

Now combine the vanilla pudding with the chocolate pudding. (I also added coconut at this point because Dad wanted a German Chocolate cream pie type of filling.) Then place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding and refrigerate until chilled and set. At least 4 hours.

 Whipped Cream Topping:

1 pint heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons instant vanilla pudding mix
powdered sugar to taste

Pour the cream into a mixing bowl then add the vanilla and sprinkle the pudding mix on top. Mix that then add the sugar to the cream. Probably about 2 cups.. Whip until stiff peaks form.


Cream Cheese Layer:

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups powdered sugar (approx)
2/3 of the whipped cream
In a mixing bowl beat the cream cheese then add the vanilla and sugar to make a thick frosting.. Then add the whipped cream and beat it all together. Now you are ready to assemble!


The crust must be completely cooled. Take the completely cooled crust and spread the Cream Cheese mixture over the top. Then carefully spread the Chocolate Pudding over the cream cheese. Lastly, spread the remaining whipped cream over the pudding. VOILA 'Possum Pie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I just realized I don't have a picture of how it looks when it's finished.. Oh well, my apologies. If you make this I'd love to hear how it turned out! You can come up with a lot of versions. We've made lemon before, plain chocolate (instead of the coconut chocolate), and Dad wants us to try making a pumpkin one..




Notes: 

We make the pudding the night before so it can cool and set up before we assemble the whole dessert.
We make half of a batch of vanilla pudding and add it to the chocolate pudding so it's not overwhelmingly chocolatey, but I'm sure it's not necessary.
Next time I make this I'm going to toast the coconut, then pulse it in the food processor to make it less stringy, before I add it to the pudding.
Pudding recipes came from The America's Test Kitchen Family Baking Book.



3 comments:

guidoscupcake said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Why do you do this to me?!? Now I want possum pie. And to go to TVBC!!!

Kayla Garcia said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Congrats on your graduation! We miss you guys too! :(

Hannah said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

@Kayla Garcia
Thank you, Kayla!
~Hannah