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Author Notes: Let me start by saying THIS HAS NO ORANGE-FLAVORED GELATIN. Today (August 14th) is (was) national Creamsicle day--I'm a little late to post this here but, never the less, there is no harm in celebrating something a little late. Now, back to the gelatin; creamsicle pies are usually made up of orange-flavored gelatin, cream cheese and whipped topping, all coming together in a graham cracker crust before being decorated with more whipped cream and, often, canned mandarin oranges. Nothing wrong with that, really, but I’ll admit here to my snobbish aversion for flavored gelatin (not quite sure why–it’s kind of a principle thing I guess) as well as my dislike for the too-foamy texture of whipped topping. I am also slightly apprehensive of using even unflavored powdered gelatin simply because my track record with it is less than stellar: a long time ago some panna cottas didn’t go so well, the gelatin not fully mixing into the cream, resulting in lumps of chewy gelatin suspended in only slightly thickened cream and, more recently, an experimental venture into rhubarb icebox bars that were a textural abomination (imagine a very solid Jell-O, like you used half the amount of liquid required for the gelatin used, made of milk… Epic fail). Then I thought about grasshopper pie, that chocolate and mint flavored jade-green pie and its marshmallow and cream base; appropriate considering the sweet dessert was based on the cocktail of the same name and, conversely, the creamsicle dessert is the basis for a cocktail. The marshmallows not only provide the gelatin needed to give this its hold but also the subtle creamy essences–a nod to the ice cream-filling of the dayglow orange treats. And the orange flavor? Well, booze, of course! When all is said and done you have something that’s a bit fresher tasting, like the essence of oranges, rather than that of orange flavored candy. Oh, and I kept the chocolate base of the grasshopper pie because, c’mon, orange and chocolate–right?!
Check out my full rambling on this at http://www.iatethewholething.com/no-bake-chocolate-creamsicle-pie/ —David Rash
Serves 8 - 10
For the crust:
- 30 Oreo cookies
- 4 tablespoons butter, softened to room temperature
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
For the filling:
- 3-1/2 ounces mini marshmallows (approx. 3 cups)
- 1/3 cup whole milk
- 3 tablespoons orange marmalade
- 1-1/2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest (about 1 large orange)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 5 bunches Cointreau
- 1 tablespoon orange juice, freshly squeezed
- 1-1/2 cups heavy cream
- Gel food coloring - red (1-2 drops) & yellow (3-4 drops) (optional)
- orange zest, for garnish (optional)
- Start the crust by pulverizing the Oreos in a food processor until they’re a fine rubble. Drop in the soft butter and continue to blitz. While the blade is running pour in the melted butter and continue to process until it’s all well incorporated.
- Tumble this mixture out into a fluted tart pan with a removable bottom and press it evenly across the bottom and up the sides. Place in the fridge while you start the filling.
- Mix the marshmallows and milk in a medium saucepan and place over low heat. Stir regularly until it all melts together—about 5 – 7 minutes.
- Once melted, pour the liquidated marshmallow into a heatproof dish.
- Beat in the marmalade, orange zest and juice, Cointreau and vanilla extract and set aside until it is completely cooled.
- Once the marshmallow mix is completely cooled whip the cream in a standup mixer with the whisk attachment on medium speed until medium-stiff peaks form—about 4 – 5 minutes.
- Turn the mixer down to low and pour in the cooled marshmallow mix and beat just until combined.
- Scrape down the bottom and sides with a rubber spatula to make sure it’s all evenly incorporated.
- If you’re using the food coloring add this in now and whisk just until combined.
- Pour the filling into the crust and cover lightly with foil, as not to mar the top, and refrigerate for at least 8 hours, but preferably overnight.
- Decorate the top with extra orange zest, fine or in long strips, just before serving if you want—either way, this is delicious!
- -You can make this up to two days in advance and just keep it in the fridge. -You can also make it ahead and freeze it; lay the pie in the freezer, flat and unwrapped, until it's frozen solid. Then wrap in two layers of plastic wrap and freeze for up to 2 months. To defrost, unwrap it and cover it lightly with foil and place in the fridge for 8 hours.