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Grasshopper Pie

This pie is a sixties rendition of the grasshopper cocktail, which can have a crust of either cookie /graham cracker crumbs or served in chocolate shells for an elegant dessert. Grasshopper pie is served chilled.

For the crust:
1 1/2 cups fine chocolate wafer crumbs (about 30 wafers)
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, melted
You can also use mini chocolate shells available from Roland Foods, or thin chocolate wafer cookies.

For the filling:
1 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
1 1/3 cups well-chilled heavy cream
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup green crème de menthe
1/4 cup white crème de cacao
4 large egg yolks

One each white and mint-flavored chocolate bar (Ghirardelli mint chocolate is available at specialty foods shops) grated for garnish

Make the crust:
In a bowl stir together the wafer crumbs, the sugar, and the butter until the mixture is combined well, pat the mixture onto the bottom and up the side of a buttered 9-inch pie plate, and bake the crust in the middle of a preheated 450°F. oven for 5 minutes. Let the crust cool.

Make the filling:
In a metal bowl sprinkle the gelatin over 1/3 cup of the cream and let it soften for 5 minutes. Whisk in the sugar, the crème de menthe, the crème de cacao, and the egg yolks, set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, and cook the mixture, whisking constantly, until it registers 160°F. on a candy thermometer. Transfer the bowl to a larger bowl of ice and cold water and stir the mixture until it is cooled and thickened. In another bowl beat the remaining 1-cup cream until it holds stiff peaks and fold it into the crème de menthe mixture thoroughly.

Pour the filling into the crust. If using mini shells or chocolate wafer cookies use a melon ball scoop to makes balls of filling. Chill the pie until is set (3 hours for large pie, 1 hour for mini shells). Sprinkle the pie with the grated chocolate.


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