Thursday, February 9, 2012

Mexican Recipes and Coconut Cream

We had a deal.

Diego would take over the cooking once he finished his PhD so that I could have more time to spend on mine. It was only fair since I did all the cooking while he was finishing up. Ever since he got back from Mexico he has been cooking AMAZING Authentic Mexican Dishes EVERY DAY! He has been collaborating with his mom on a blog of traditional Mexican recipes...they also had a deal...she would post her recipes and he would cook them and photograph them to finish off the post. The result, delicious food in my belly and a compendium of authentic traditional Mexican recipes called Comida Mexicana! You can use google translate, but some of the instructions get translated a little funny. Some of the recipes are photos of a recipe book from his Great Great Grandmother (dates back to 1850!). Since they are photos they cannot be translated by google so you will need a dictionary. Eventually we will make an English version but in the mean time...if you have any questions about a recipe, leave a comment on the blog!

The only downside to it that I really enjoy cooking so I do miss it. I know it takes up a significant portion of my time and I do appreciate being served and having the extra time to work. However, sometimes I just can't resist baking. Which works out great since we both have a sweet tooth and Diego has been focusing on making savoury dishes. Enter one of my favorite pies...
Coconut Cream
Diego is not a fan of shredded coconut and the only coconut in most coconut cream pie recipes is shredded coconut... so I found (and modified) a recipe that uses coconut milk for the custard and it is divine!!!

Coconut Cream Pie (original recipe)

1/2 cup of all purpose flour
1/2 cup of unrefined sugar
1/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups of cream
1 1/2 cups of coconut milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 9 to 10 inch pie crust - baked and cooled

Whipped cream
1 1/4 cups of chilled whipping cream
1 tbsp of icing sugar
1 tsp cornstarch (I think I might leave this out next time...)
1/2 tsp of vanilla

In a large saucepan, whisk together flour, sugar and salt. Whisk in eggs, cream and coconut milk until very smooth. If lumpy, strain before heating. Heat over medium heat, whisking continuously until custard comes to a boil and thickens. Yous should be able to see the impression of the whisk in the custard when it is done. Remove from, heat and stir in the vanilla. Pour into pre-baked pie shell and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.

In a medium bowl, beat whipped cream, sugar, cornstarch and vanilla to stiff peaks and spread onto chilled pie.
If you like shredded coconut, you can add 1 1/4 cups of unsweetened coconut to the custard when you add the vanilla. You can also toast 1/4 cup of unsweetened coconut to sprinkle on top. I LOVE coconut so I added the toasted coconut to mine. Diego added coarse cane sugar to his to add a little crunch and sweetness, his tooth is sweeter than mine! The overall consensus...this pie is to DIE for. You want to close your eyes and grunt with pleasure with every bite! Ours lasted 3 days in the fridge and that was only under extreme self control... you have been warned.