One of my previous pastry chef positions was at a very large, old, popular inn here in NH. The big old inn, as I semi-affectionately refer to it.
They wanted a molten. I thought moltens, while tasty, were really, really over. (They had just started selling them at DQ. Come on now.) My solution was this soufflé meets brownie batter meets molten kind of thing, topped with crumbly chocolate tart dough. I served it with ice cream that changed seasonally, along with a little pot of creme anglaise. Black berry, buttered pecan, or plain old vanilla ice cream were some of my favorites with the pot pie.
It’s killer. If you love chocolate, you’ll love this. If you hate chocolate, it’ll make you love it. It’s the most perfectly warming thing to enjoy on a snow day. Whip this one up for Valentine’s Day and you are sure to impress your honey bunny.
This dessert is best enjoyed shortly after removing it from the oven. The filling and tart dough can be made up to two days in advance and kept in the fridge until needed.
Hot Chocolate Pot Pie
Chocolate Tart Dough
4 Tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp all purpose flour
2 Tbsp cocoa powder
1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large bowl with a hand mixer) cream the butter and powdered sugar together until smooth.
2. Add the yolk, vanilla, and salt until just combined.
3. Add the all purpose flour and cocoa butter. Mix on low until the mixture forms a dough.
4. Roll the tart dough between two pieces of parchment paper to about 1/8-inch thick. Place the rolled dough onto a cookie sheet and chill while you’re making the filling.
Hot Chocolate Pot Pie Filling
6 Tbsp unsalted butter
6 oz of dark chocolate, chopped (This is the time to use the good stuff, please. 72% is perfect for this recipe.)
1/3 cup sugar, divided
1 1/2 tsp corn starch
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs, separated
Makes appx. four standard sized coffee cups (or 6-oz ramekins).
1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the coffee cups onto a cookie sheet and set aside.
2. Melt the chocolate and butter in a medium-sized heatproof bowl in the microwave or over a double boiler.
3. While the chocolate is melting, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or in a medium sized bowl with a whisk and a little elbow grease), whip the egg whites and half of the sugar to soft peaks. Set aside.
4. Whisk the remaining sugar, corn starch, salt, and egg yolks into the melted chocolate mixture until combined.
5. Fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture using a rubber spatula.
6. Fill the coffee cups a little less than 3/4 of the way up with batter.
7. Cut circles from the chilled tart dough using a round cookie cutter, or by flipping an empty mug upside down onto the dough and tracing with a sharp knife. Top the coffee cups with the tart dough rounds. Gently press along the edges to secure the dough. Cut an X into the center of the tart dough using the tip of a sharp knife.
8. Bake for 25 to 28 minutes. Enjoy right away, or store in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat pot pies in the oven for appx. 10 minutes, or pop in the microwave for 25 seconds.
The filling will rise while baking, then fall when removed from the oven. Don’t worry if the tart dough crackles, or if the chocolate filling peeks through the tart dough and drips over the sides a bit. It’s a deep, chocolatey, rustic dessert that will be delicious no matter what.