With family & friends either out of town or moved away, Brian & I found ourselves spending Thanksgiving and the long weekend by ourselves this year, which we were looking forward to. As lovely as it is to gather with those we love, it also nice to have time to ourselves…quiet moments of gratitude.
And it turned out to be a good thing for practical reasons as well. Tuesday evening before Thanksgiving I suddenly fell ill. Turned out to be the worst cold of my life. As I write this, I am still congested and coughing, at day 13! Unfortunately Brian caught my cold and is in the worst part of it right now. If we had invited people over for the holiday, we would have had to cancel so as fate would have it, all things work out the way they are supposed to after all.
We did make a Thanksgiving dinner for ourselves…going through it at our own pace. There was a small turkey, dressing, brussels sprouts and gravy. For dessert, instead of the usual pumpkin pie, I made us a Chocolate-Rum Chiffon Pie. Unfortunately it took a couple of days before we were up to actually eating some of it.
Going through the weekend we also went through some emotional ups and downs. Our son is going through another bad spell. Depression is difficult for everyone in the family to deal with. He will be 39 years old in a couple of weeks. I pray he will find a way to move through his pain.
And so over the course of the weekend Brian & I shared our pie with each other in the same way we always handle the joys and challenges in our life…one bite at a time.
This is a lovely pie. It would be a welcome addition to any holiday table so I’ve included the recipe here.
I hope your Thanksgiving holiday was a joyous one and that you are enjoying the moments in this winter season. Cheers!
Chocolate-Rum* Chiffon Pie
Chocolate Crumb Crust
- 2 cups crumbs from chocolate wafers
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
Combine the crumbs, sugar and salt in a mixing bowl and toss together. Add the butter and stir vigorously until blended.
With your fingers press and pat the mixture over the bottom and sides of a 9-inch (23-cm) pie pan, taking care not to make the sides too thick.
Bake the crust in a preheated 325 degree fahrenheit oven for 8 minutes, then cool completely before filling.
- 1 envelope (1 tablespoon) unflavored gelatin
- 1 cup brewed coffee, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 eggs, separated
- 2 tablespoons rum* (*or you could substitute coconut extract for an exotic flavor)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup heavy (double) cream
- extra chocolate for grating or shredded coconut to top (optional)
Sprinkle gelatin over the coffee and let stand for a few minutes. Meanwhile, in a saucepan, combine the milk and chocolate. Place over low heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the chocolate melts. Remove from the heat, add 1/4 cup of the sugar, the salt, and egg yolks and whisk until blended. Return to moderate heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens slightly and barely reaches a simmer, about 5 minutes; do not allow it to boil.
Add the softened gelatin and stir over the heat about 1 minute longer. Pour the chocolate mixture into a bowl and refrigerate, stirring occasionally, until it mounds when dropped from a spoon and is the consistency of unbeaten egg whites, about 1 hour. Stir in the rum (or coconut extract) and vanilla.
Whip cream until stiff. In another bowl and with clean beaters, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Slowly add the remaining 1/4 sugar, continuing to beat until stiff peaks form. Fold the cream and egg whites into the chocolate mixture and pile into the pie shell. Chill several hours before serving.
For a lovely presentation, grate some chocolate over the surface of the pie. If you used coconut extract instead of rum, you could sprinkle shredded coconut on top.