Challenge #2: Mississippi Mud Pie

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Just as I could count on my tyrannical brother to boss me about with a recipe for my cooking challenge, so I could count on my mum to provide a devilishly good treat. I don’t know if it’s a case of living vicariously – over the past year my mum has slimmed down to a lean mean running machine, so I’m sure she won’t be making such chocolatey, creamy concoctions herself. And while I too try to be health-conscious and enjoy things only in moderation, she knows me well enough to know that I’m not going to say no to this Mississippi mud pie.

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This seems like one of those desserts I only ever had defrosted from Iceland when I was young, I’ve certainly never had a homemade variant. I couldn’t even really remember what a Mississippi mud pie was when she suggested it, but fortunately Simon Rimmer was on hand to help me out. Even that connection seems appropriate, as my mum loves Simon as much as I do (and she works with his sister! Frustratingly, she is yet to use this to our advantage in any way) and whenever I’m home we have a glorious meal at Greens, his vegetarian restaurant in Didsbury.

As I celebrated my birthday last week, I opted to abandon tradition and make a birthday pie rather than a cake, which proved to be a very wise decision.  It’s rich, it’s chocolatey, and just when I think the fudgy top layer is my favourite I get down to the biscuit base and change my mind.  A phenomenal treat.

Mississippi Mud Pie

By Simon Rimmer

Ingredients:

Base:

300g Bourbon biscuits, crushed

75g butter, melted

Filling:

85g dark chocolate (at least 70%), broken into pieces

85g butter

2 eggs

85g muscovado sugar

100ml double cream

Fudge Sauce:

150g dark chocolate (at least 70%), broken into pieces

150ml double cream

3 tbsp golden syrup

175g icing sugar, sifted

Method:

1.  Preheat the oven to 180C.

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2.  Mix the biscuits and melted butter together in a bowl.

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3.  Press the mixture into the base and sides of a 23cm springform tin, then put it in the fridge to chill for 10 minutes.  (I found it quite difficult to build up the wall around the side of the tin – it kept crumbling down.  In the end I developed a technique of spooning in the mixture at the base and using the back of the spoon to push it up the side.  It held up splendidly.)

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4.  Meanwhile, start on the filling.  Melt the chocolate and butter together over a pan of gently simmering water.

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5.  Whisk the eggs and sugar together in a separate bowl for 5-6 minutes until very creamy.

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6.  Fold in the cream and the melted chocolate mixture.

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7.  Pour into the chilled springform tin.

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8.  Bake for 40-50 minutes until just set, then remove from the oven and leave to cool down completely in the tin.

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9.  Later, heat all the fudge sauce ingredients over medium heat, stirring regularly, until smooth and glossy.  Stand aside for 5 minutes to cool.

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10.  Pour the sauce over the cooled pie, then chill in the fridge for 20 minutes before serving.  You might want to serve it with cream or ice cream – I would do nothing to dilute the chocolatey goodness.

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