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October 2003 NEW ORLEANS
Coconut Cream Pie
Chef Donald Link of Herbsaint – New Orleans, LA
Adapted by StarChefs

Yield: 8 servings


    Pastry Cream
  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • ½ vanilla bean, split
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • 5 egg yolks

  • Macadamia Nut Crust
  • ½ pound macadamia nuts, toasted
  • 1 cup flour
  • 9 Tablespoons butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • Assembly
  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 ½ cups unsweetened coconut, lightly toasted


For Pastry Cream:
In medium, heavy bottomed saucepan, pour 2 ½ cups cream, and scrape vanilla seeds into cream. Discard pod. Bring to scalding over medium heat. While cream is being heated, combine egg yolks with sugar and cornstarch. When cream is scalding, add remaining ½ cup cream to egg yolk mixture. Pour a few tablespoons hot cream into egg yolks, stirring constantly. Pour egg mixture into pot and turn heat to medium-low. Stirring constantly, cook egg and cream mixture until very thick. Remove from heat, transfer to shallow container, cover with plastic so film touches cream, preventing skin formation. Refrigerate until cold and firm, 1 hour or more.

For Crust:
Combine nuts and flour in food processor. Pulse until nuts are finely ground, and no more. In mixer with paddle attachment, cream butter with sugar. Add yolk, mix thoroughly, then add nut/flour mixture and salt. Mix until smooth. Form dough into ball, wrap in plastic, then refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.

Divide dough into two pieces. Between two sheets of plastic wrap, roll one half out to 10 - inch diameter disc. Repeat with other half. Line two 9 - inch tart pans with dough and chill in freezer until very firm, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place pie weights in shells, and bake until light golden, about 15 minutes. Remove pie weights, prick all over with fork, then bake until golden brown, about 10-15 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

Combine heavy cream, sugar, and 2 cups pastry cream in mixer with whip attachment. Whip at high speed until soft peaks form. Add coconut, and continue whisking by hand until stiff peaks emerge. Spoon into cooled tart shells. Serve immediately, or refrigerate until service.

Wine Pairing:
Mt. Horrocks “Cordon Cut” Riesling, Australia