Chocolate mint Milk Bar pie
Updated: Sep 5, 2021
If you've seen my recent cookie recipes (Cinnamon Graham Cracker, Chewy Vanilla Sugar, and Oreo Crunch Birthday) you know I've been taking a class this month taught by Christina Tosi, founder of Milk Bar! We've moved on from the cookie section, and onto pies.
We started out by making the classic Milk Bar pie which has a gooey center and oat cookie crust and then transitioned over to creating our own unique pie recipe and here we are. This one is inspired by a mint brownie that my sister and I used to make together when we were growing up. Though I was younger and she really did most of the baking, I loved the cool minty flavor combined with the dense and fudgy brownie. I took inspiration from that recipe's flavor and texture to create this pie and it is something you won't want to miss.
For the crust, you'll make a chocolate shortbread that is then crumbled and tossed with melted butter to form a deep chocolatey crust. The pie filling is perfectly dense and chocolatey and plays so well with the texture of the crust. Once your pie has chilled, you'll make a white chocolate ganache that has peppermint extract in it which gives a perfectly cool yet sweet topping to your chocolate filled pie!
I know some people don't love the combination of chocolate and mint, and those people probably haven't made it this far down the page...but in case you have, know that you have the option to leave out the peppermint extract in the ganache and this would be a great all chocolate pie!
I suggest that you use a stand mixer for the chocolate shortbread and pie filling, but if you don't have one you'll still be able to make this pie! The only adjustment I would make is allowing your shortbread butter to come down closer to room temperature so that it's easier to fully combine your ingredients.
1 stick (half cup) unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
Additional crust assembly ingredients:
2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick (half cup) melted unsalted butter
4 egg yolks
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
White chocolate ganache topping:
1/2 cup white chocolate (chopped or chips)
2 tablespoons + 1 1/2 teaspoon heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon + extra drop of peppermint extract
Cooking time estimate: 30 to 40 minutes of prep time, an hour and a half of bake time, and a minimum 3 hours of chill and freeze times.
Cooking instructions: Make your chocolate shortbread. Preheat your oven to 300 degrees. In your stand mixer with the paddle attached, place your stick of butter and sugar into your bowl. Turn your stand mixer on to a low to medium speed to combine your butter and sugar, this should take about 2 minutes. In a separate bowl, combine your flour and cocoa powder with a whisk or spoon. Pour the mixture into your stand mixer and bring your mixer to a low speed for about a minute. Pause your mixer and scrape down the sides and paddle as needed. Turn your mixer back on for a minute or two until your dough forms.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Remember that you're going to crumble the shortbread after it bakes to form a crust, so looks don’t matter at this stage! You want to flatten your dough onto the parchment paper to get an even bake. I divided my dough into two balls and then flattened them down onto my baking sheet. Bake for about 45 minutes until your shortbread is firm and set. Remove from your oven and allow to cool (you can place it in the fridge if needed).
Prep your crust. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. If you have a food processor, you can break down your fully cooled shortbread in your food processor. It shouldn't be a powder, but you want to break it down to a small crumb. I don't have a food processor, so to break down my shortbread I placed it into a large ziplock bag and used a meat tenderizer to crumble it. You could also use the back of a pan to do this. If you still have some large chunks, you can break those up by hand. Once you're done, pour your shortbread crumbs into a medium bowl.
Melt two tablespoons of butter, and then add the melted butter and your 1/4 teaspoon of salt into your crumbled shortbread to form your crust. If the crumble isn't coming together enough, you can always add another tablespoon of melted butter.
Reserve about a tablespoon or so of your crumbled and buttered shortbread to sprinkle on top of your finished pie. Pour the rest of your shortbread mixture into your pie plate. You can use a spoon or flat tool to press your crumble down to form a crust, and make sure that you press your sides and corners down firmly as well. Once you're sure there aren't any empty spaces, place your crust in the oven for 5 minutes.
Remove your pie plate from the oven, and you can again use a utensil to flatten any areas of your crust now that it's warm and a bit more pliable. Set aside to cool slightly.
Make your filling. Meanwhile, it's time for your filling! In your stand mixer, pour in your sugar, light brown sugar, corn starch, cocoa powder, and salt. Turn your mixer on at a low speed for about 15 seconds to combine your dry ingredients.
In a separate small bowl, melt your butter and then pour into your dry ingredients. Turn your mixer on at its lowest speed to combine for about 30 seconds. Pause to scrape down the sides of your bowl, and then mix again for 10-15 seconds until combined.
Now separate out your egg yolks and place them into a small bowl or cup. Turn your stand mixer back on at the lowest speed and add one yolk at a time, only adding the next once the last has been fully incorporated.
In a separate small bowl, combine your heavy cream and vanilla. Pour this combination into your stand mixer, and at the lowest speed once again, stir to combine your filling. Be careful not to over mix at this point or to whip any air into your filling. Pause after about 30 seconds, and at this point you can use a spatula to finish fully combining your filling (be sure to scrape down at the bottom).
Your oven should be set to 350 degrees already but if it's not, turn your oven on. Pour your filling into your partially baked pie crust. Place your pie into the oven for 20-30 minutes until a light brown crust has formed on the top. At this point, remove your pie from the oven and reduce the temperature to 325 degrees. Place your pie back into the oven and cook for another 5-10 minutes until your pie has set (it should still wiggle a little if you shake it but only in the center).
Remove your pie and allow it to cool slightly at room temperature, and then place your pie into the fridge for at least an hour. Then, transfer your pie to the freezer for at least another hour.
Prep your white chocolate mint ganache topping. After your pie has fully chilled in the freezer, you're ready to make your white chocolate mint ganache topping. Measure out (and chop if needed) your white chocolate and place it into a bowl. Put your heavy cream into a microwave safe container and into the microwave. Heat your cream VERY carefully, I did in 5 second intervals since it's such a small amount. Once it is hot to the touch but not boiling, pour your heavy cream over your white chocolate. Allow it to sit for two minutes.
Now, stir your white chocolate and cream mixture together until it fully combines and has a glossy look to it. If you still see chunks of white chocolate, you can place the mixture into the microwave for 5 seconds at a time. Once you're done, add in your peppermint extract. I recommend starting with 1/4 teaspoon, combining, tasting, and then adding a drop or two more to taste if needed (you can always add but you can't take it away!).
Once you are done, pour your ganache onto your fully chilled pie directly into the center. Take an offset spatula, spoon, or knife, and spread the ganache around however you'd like - chose to do a circle not all the way to the edge! Then, if you reserved any of your shortbread crumble, sprinkle it on top. Allow your pie to finish setting with the ganache in the fridge for 2 hours and then serve and enjoy!
You can leave the pie in the fridge for up to a week, or you can slice and freeze the pie and enjoy any time.
Carb and serving info:
Servings: 8 slices
Carbs per serving: 57.2
Carbs for full recipe: 457.23
Note: Carb information is calculated based on the specific ingredients I used to cook with to help guide my own insulin to carb ratio when dosing before I eat my home cooked recipes.