Make Ahead

Tall, Dark & Handsome Pie

February 12, 2010
1 Ratings
  • Serves 6-8
Author Notes

This is a mile-high to die for pie said I!! What a crowd pleaser...the men in my family loved it, the women were swooning over it and, in fact, named it! I based this on a recipe in Saveur Magazine with some extra touches and some explanations that help the finished result. It is definitely NOT low calorie, but my philosophy is, eat light and indulge in a sliver of good is short! —GirlCook

What You'll Need
  • 16 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/2" cubes and chilled plus more for pie plate
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 9-oz. package chocolate wafers, such as Nabisco, finely ground (about 2 1/4 cups) **see note below
  • 3 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 2/3 cup plus 2 TBS sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 9 Egg yolks
  • 9 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2/1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract (1 1/2 tsp for filling and 1 tsp for topping)
  • 2 cups Heavy Cream
  • Dark Chocolate for garnish
  1. MAKE FILLING: Heat half-and-half in a 4-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat until it just begins to simmer; remove pan from heat. In a large bowl, whisk together 2/3 cup sugar and cornstarch; add egg yolks and whisk until smooth, (this will take several minutes of continuous whipping with a your whisk). Drizzle half-and-half into egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly, until smooth. Return mixture to saucepan; heat over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until bubbles rise to the surface and mixture is very thick, 3-4 minutes. (Watch this very carefully and whisk constantly.) Remove pan from heat and add remaining 8 TBS. of butter and both semisweet and unsweetened chocolate in small batches, whisking until smooth; stir in 1 1/2 ts. vanilla. Add the espresso at this time if using. (Note: do this all swiftly and whisk it continously to keep it smooth). Set a sieve over a medium bowl and strain chocolate mixture. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing plastic onto surface; refrigerate until set, about 4 hours.
  2. MAKE THE CRUST: Heat oven to 375 degrees. Grease bottom and sides of 9" glass pie plate with butter; set aside. Heat 8 TBS butter and brown sugar in a 1-qt. saucepan until sugar dissolves. Transfer butter mixture to a medium bowl; stir in ground wafers. Transfer mixture to pie plate, press into bottom and sides using the bottom of a measuring cup to compress crust. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. Bake until set, about 15 minutes; let cool. (Check after 10 minutes into cooking to ensure cookies do not blacken/if it's overcooked, it gets very hard).
  3. ASSEMBLE THE PIE: Remove plastic wrap from chocolate filling and, using a rubber spatula, stir mixture until smooth. Spoon mixture into reserved crust, forming a dome, and smooth surface with the spatula. In a large bowl, whisk remaining sugar, remaining vanilla, and heavy cream until stiff peaks form (or use your stand mixer with whip attachment); spread on top of filling, forming a dome.Using a peeler, shave some of the dark chocolate onto top of pie. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.
  4. This pie looks AMAZING...a mile high! **A word on those chocolate wafers. First of all, they're hard to find and when you do, they are more than $4 for a small box of them, ridiculous. Sure, you could use oreo crumbs, but this would move the pie from the sophisticated cocoa dream to a more traditional sweet pudding pie. So the wafers are worth looking for and worth the price...although I am going to research a recipe for homemade chocolate wafers!

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • GirlCook
  • Laura Tyler Neely
    Laura Tyler Neely
  • Jana McMahon
    Jana McMahon
  • nannydeb

8 Reviews

karla C. October 7, 2018
It seems to be missing the amount of espresso to add.
JamieATL November 24, 2016
Just made this because my kids wanted a chocolate dessert for Thanksgiving, it was easy and super delicious. A big hit and beautiful to look at.
GirlCook February 23, 2015
Laura great idea! Will try this!!
Laura T. February 23, 2015
I made this over the weekend, it was delicious! And I used 1/2 of the leftover egg whites to make a meringue circle, (with some chopped dark chocolate swirled in), and placed it over the cookie crust, but under the chocolate pudding. Gave it a nice extra bit of gooey ness.
Jana M. January 1, 2011
Oh Boy! This is so good with our local Hawaiian Dark 78% cacao chocolate. Topped the pie with dk. chocolate covered cacao nibs.
nannydeb February 12, 2010
This is my niece's favorite pie. I made a chocolate meringue for her a couple of months ago and she liked it. The chocolate cookie crust will be better than just my usual crust. Why doesn't anybody make chocolate pie anymore?
nannydeb February 12, 2010
That looks fabulous! I'll try your recipe!
GirlCook February 12, 2010
Hi nannydeb, I hope you get to make it, please let me know what you think, it has been such a big hit in my family! A note: the longer it's in the fridge, the better, it was even better the next day, looked awesome when cut and tasted even better!