Tuesday, April 7, 2009

TWD: Banana Cream Pie with Peanut Butter and Chocolate Ganache

I have a confession. I need a pastry coach.

I have an undeniable fear of tempering. I’ve admitted to this before. But no matter how many times I do it…I always scramble.

Things started off great….getting the hot milk in the eggs this time. I wiped the sweat from my brow and put down the pot from my shaky hand. I did it. I send a high five to (um…no one) in the air.

Now it was time to cook this on the stove.

This is where my impatience sets in.

My pastry cream didn’t even begin to boil before it curdled mid stir, not long enough for me to catch it and pull it off the stove. I decided to attempt to fix the problem by running it through a sieve. It didn’t quite eliminate the problem but it tasted fine so I decided I was going to press forward and just go with it.

This was fine with me as I am really not a pie person nor did I really have an occasion in which to share the pie, so for trial sake, I just didn’t see the point in busting out 6 more eggs.

But the truth is, I could use the practice so this recipe was good for me. I have also come to some realizations that I may need to work on a few things before I ever become a famous pastry chef you see on the Food Network. Hey it’s my dream…go get your own.

Anyway….here is the problem.

One: I procrastinate. I always have. I have good intentions to pre-plan. I really do.

Two: I am addicted to doing too many things at once. i.e. I am notorious for turning up a burner on high, and walking away to do something else (who am I kidding…about 40 million other something’s).

Undoubtedly, this is where the problem lies…I procrastinate; therefore I always am in a hurry to get it all done. At once. I don’t know how to go step by step. I don’t read the recipe beforehand no matter how many times I give myself the pep talk “Now next time….I WILL read the recipe start to finish”. Who am I kidding? It just isn’t me.

So in my attempt to get everything done in record time, inevitably becomes about quadruple time to get anything done, followed by getting nothing done because set out to complete way too many tasks available for the time I actually have in which to do it.

This is what happens when my husband leaves for work: I get out every pan…and open every cabinet…and just picture this with the vent fan on high because either there was a small fire at some point on the stove OR, I had spillage in my oven and it just plain smells like burnt something or other.

I laugh because I know I can be a good cook and I know I can do things but it just keeps me very humble almost daily to have these types of kitchen disasters no matter how much I curse and yell at curdled eggs. It’s just curdled eggs after all, isn’t it?

I just think my mantra should be: “Take your time.”

Patience is a virtue.

Are ya done listening to my Tuesday morning rant?

My changes to the recipe:

I followed the crust recipe to a T, I had bad luck last time. I improved this go around as it’s my second time with homemade pie crust. This time my edges didn’t burn…since I followed the directions and wrapped the edges tighter this time.

The pastry cream, I also followed to a T, see above rant. The pastry cream was really thick after refrigeration, so I followed the advice and added milk. I think I added too much because it became really runny....and well....see the picture of the slice below.

I then added a layer of chocolate ganache (does this seem like the Saturday Night Live Taco Town skit yet?)

If that wasn’t enough, I added a peanut butter cream layer.

Then I followed Dorie’s cream topping. Did anyone else thing it tasted just like Cool Whip? Certainly not a bad thing in my book since I happen to like Cool Whip.

Overall Verdict: I actually liked the pie. Despite my crust and pastry cream whoas this week, they were both surprisingly good. I'm not sure I liked my alterations though....too much going on for me but that is just my opinion. I would probably try this again....Dorie's way.

Recipes for my alterations are below….

Now—move along and take a look at the other bakers—on TWD’s blog roll. For the recipe? Buy the book that all us "Tuesday with Dorie" bloggers follow, OR check out our host, Amy, from Sing for Your Supper. Thanks, Amy, for a great challenge!

Chocolate Ganache:

Recipe courtesy of "Cake Love", by Warren Brown

1 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate

Directions: In a heavy bottomed sauce pan, heat heavy cream until hot and bubbles begin to appear at the edges of the pot. In a heat safe bowl, pour cream over chocolate. Whisk until combined.

Peanut Butter Cream Filling:
Recipe courtesy of "Bon Appetit", May 2009

3 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
2/3 cup heavy cream, whipped to stiff peaks.

Whip first 4 ingredients together until well combined. Fold in the whipped cream with a rubber spatula.


Jessica said...

Chocolate and peanut butter is such a classic combination so I love that you put it to such good use in your pie. I am right there with you in procrastination (it's awful, I keep trying to change but I'm a dyed-in-the-wool procrastinator) and "multi-tasking" (which is more my ability to distract myself from the task at hand). But, your kitchen is so pretty that even if it's a mess it still looks great.

Flourchild said...

Yum great minds think alike, I used chocolate too! Im glad you liked the pie even if the whipped topping did not work for you. Im glad it tasted good cus it sure looks tasty!

chocolatechic said...

Oh...yours looks tons better than mine.

Sweet as Coco said...

Its like an "Elvis" cake....but with Chocolate. Per advice from my husband. :)

Flourchild, oh I actually liked the whip...I didnt care for my peanut butter addition.

Jeff said...

The definition of tempering in my dictionary means "to get paper towels to clean milk and eggs off the walls". Often preceded and followed by many four letter adjectives.

This dish sounds amazing and hopefully someone gave you the deserved high five.

Kimberly Johnson said...

Your pie looks and sounds wonderful!

Amy said...

Mmmm - those sound like pretty good variations to me! You can't go wrong with chocolate and PB! Thanks for baking with me this week!


Michelle said...

I love chocolate ganache and always have a container in my frig. And do not understand how some live with chocolate ganache a the waiting.

Your pie looks amazing!

farah said...

It looks and sounds delicious!

Heather said...

So funny - I suffer from the whole not-reading-the recipe-all-the-way-through, too.

Teanna said...

That peanut butter cream layer sounds AWESOME and your kitchen is beautiful! I'd do some serious damage in that kitchen!

TeaLady said...

WOW!!! Chocolate AND PB. You are too much. Didn't Elvis like bananas and PB. He would have loved your pie. There is another setting besides HIGH on the stove. Who woulda guessed.

Great pie.

Jules Someone said...

Your additions sound amazing! Nice job.

Megan said...

First - here's that high-5 *smack*

I also am guilty of not reading the recipe through, but I think most of us do that anyways.

Also, if you have any pie leftover, can I have a piece?

Amanda said...

This look delicious! This pie was a hit at my house :)

Sweet as Coco said...

Jeff- LOL- I was on the verge of having pastry cream all over but somehow managed to keep my cool. I did get the high five!

Michelle-good tip-I put my ganache in the fridge b/c I didnt know what to do with it...but...you are right. Just knowing its there is quite a danger.

Heather- Do you think there is hope for us? haha!

Tea Lady- lol--No, I know no other setting on my stove. High is it. :) I don't know what my problem is!

Megan--AW! Thanks for the high five!!! And...yes...you can have a piece but you may have to fight with my mother in laws 90 year old dad to get it!

Thanks to everyone for their nice comments! Seems like all the trouble was worth it!

Anonymous said...

Oh I thought about adding chocolate and peanut butter. I should have! Your pie looks great. I am really bad at multi-tasking in the kitchen. It gets me in trouble alot

Maria said...

Lovely dessert. I wish I could have a slice!

Shannon (The Daily Balance) said...

pb, chocolate AND banana? OMG .

Annette said...

Ooooh, chocolate, peanut butter and bananas! Sounds delicious! I need some practice making pie as well. But I liked how it turned out in the end.

Sweet as Coco said...

I agree....need the practice but definately pays off in the end! As long as I can manage to FOCUS!