Week 20: Wake Up and Smell the Coffee Pie

This week’s pie is brought to you by Chanukah! My mother hosts a Chanukah dinner every year, never ceasing to complain about latkes stinking up the house and threaten to not host again next year. There wasn’t a particularly appropriate pie in the cookbook for Chanukah, so I decided to go with the Wake Up and Smell the Coffee Pie since my family is big into coffee and coffee-flavored desserts.

What’s Inside: Espresso, egg, gelatin, Kahlua, graham crackers

“Pro” Tips:

1) GUYS, I discovered that you can actually buy graham cracker crumbs! Gone are the days of cookie crumbs slipping through the holes that have been poked through the plastic bag they reside in by the sheer force of a rolling pin. Well, sometimes gone. There are a ton of other cookies that are used as a base for pie crusts. Either way, I’m excited!

2) When folding the egg whites into the espresso mixture, I found it nearly impossible to fully combine the two. There just seemed to be a puddle of espresso at the bottom of the bowl. When I poured the mixture into the pie shell, though, it seemed smooth. Upon cutting into the pie, there was a surprise layer of espresso in between the crust and the rest of the chiffon. Good news is, it was delicious!

3) I find it a bit difficult to assess how much alcohol to use when flavoring whipped cream. This recipe called for 2 tablespoons of Kahlua, but it was definitely way too overpowering. I’d start with one, taste it, and add more if you feel the spirit (pun intended).

What Baking Can Do:

Our family usually has about a 2:1 ratio when it comes to desserts on holidays. As in, there are 16 desserts if there are 8 people. Despite being ready to burst after a meal consisting of fried potatoes and other fun carbohydrates, the fam set out to eat dessert (a relatively tame affair this year…we only had 3). Is anybody actually hungry when they eat dessert, really? Well, there’s always room for something this delicious! The graham cracker/espresso/chiffon combo was incredible. My dairy-free cousin was excited that she could eat the chiffon part of the pie. The only thing I would have changed was to add way less Kahlua to the whipped cream. It overpowered the other flavors.

Hopefully nobody lost any sleep over this pie!

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