Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Happy Pi(e) Day!

 Happy Pi Day, Everyone!  In honor of Pi Day (3.14), I baked Impossible Pie from my grandmother's cookbook.  Since I can't share a slice with you, here is a video of Lawrence's Alferd Packer String Band performing "Pi", which features my favorite line "I sent my son to college, they told him pi r squared.  I told him pie are round, those twits, cornbread are square."

Now, make no mistake, this isn't the pretty pie that should be the focal point of your Thanksgiving dessert spread.  However, if you are a fan of coconut and pecans, but not a fan of making pie crust, then this is the pie for you.  The whole pie comes together in about 10 minutes, then there is a long (50 minute) wait while it bakes.  The "impossible" part of the pie is that it forms it's own crust on the bottom  - although mine was more of a thick skin than a true crust.  The very high egg to flour ratio creates a coconut-custard layer topped by the toasty pecans.  Luckily, grandma was visiting this weekend to tell me that the very runny consistency of the batter and the slight wiggle of the center when it came out of the oven were to be expected and the pie ended up rich and creamy instead of overcooked.

It's very good the way it is, but I can't help but wonder what would happen if you added chocolate chips and more pecans to the mixture and baked it in a pie shell.  I suspect that the chocolate chips would sink to the bottom making yet another delicious layer to the pie.  If anyone gives it a try, let me know how it goes.

Impossible Pie
Makes 2 9" pies

4 eggs, beaten
1 3/4 c. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/4 c. coconut
2 c. milk
4 tbsp. butter, melted
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. flour
1 c. pecan pieces

1. Mix together all ingredients.
2. Pour in pie plate.
3. Bake 50 minutes at 350 degrees.

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