Saturday, January 7, 2012

Just call me Switzerland.....

I've got no dog in the hunt in Monday's National Championship Game.  Truth be told, I probably won't even watch the least the whole game.  If it's as boring as the first time these two played this year, I know I'll be asleep by halftime.  But I know some of you will be glued to the tube cheering on your team, so I'm offering up these two desserts as options for your party.

For the LSU fan, these bars are named (by me) after who,  had he not got caught smoking synthetic weed (really dude...synthetic??) during the year and suspended for a game probably would have won the Heisman.  Tyrann Mathieu.   I think he is arguably the best player on, at least up to this point,  the best team in the country.  They're sweet from the honey (like the way he can turn an entire game around with a punt return) and spicy from the cinnamon (like his personality).

If you prefer The Tide, you're gonna love this pie.  I found this in Baked...New Frontiers in Baking.  One of the authors, Matt Lewis, attended the University of Alabama and his neighbor made this pie for football tailgating.  Seems he made a particularly boozy version but this recipe only calls for 1 tablespoon of whisky.  If you like your dessert to give you a buzz, feel free to add more!  It's essentially a gooey, chocolate chip cookie with a crust.  Serve this warm with some ice cream on top.  It's sinful.

Here are the recipes for both:

Tuscaloosa Tollhouse Pie
Baked....New Ftontiers in Baking
Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito

Pie Dough.....make your favorite recipe or take the easy route and use Pillsbury frozen pie dough
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened, cut into cubes
1 tablespoon whiskey (or more!)
3/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped (I had pecans so I used those)
1 1/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Roll your pie dough into a 12" round and transfer the dough to a pie dish and carefully work it into the pie dish, folding any overhand under and crimping the edge as you go.  Wrap and freeze the crust until firm, about 2 hours or up to 3 months.

Preheat the oven to 350 deg. F

In a medium bowl, whisk the flour and sugars together until combined,  Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the eggs on high speed until foamy, about 3 minutes.  Remove the whisk attachment and add the paddle attachment.  With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture.  Turn the mixer to high and beat for 2 minutes.  Scrape down the bowl and add the butter.  Beat on high speed until the mixture is combined.  Scrape down the bowl, add the whiskey, and beat the mixture on high speed for 1 minute.

Fold the walnuts (or pecans) and 3/4 cup of the chocolate chips into the filling.

Pour the filling into the frozen pie shell and spread it out evenly.  Top the filling with the remaining 1/2 cup chocolate chips.  

Bake in the center of the oven for 25 minutes, then cover the edges of the crust loosely with aluminum foil and bake for another 25 minutes (this will prevent the crust from browning too quickly).  Test the pie by sticking a knife in the center of the filling.  If the knife comes out clean, the pie is done.  Transfer to a wire rack and let cool before slicing.

The pie can be stored in the refrigerator, tightly covered for up to 2 days.

Honey (Badger) Bars
King Arthur Flour

2 cups + 1 tablespoon All Purpose Flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup honey
1 cup sugar
1 large egg

1 cup confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 deg F and lightly grease a 10x15" jelly roll pan.  Whisk the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon together in a bowl and set aside.  With an electric mixer, combine the oil, honey, sugar and egg until well blended.  Add the dry ingredients and mix until they're incorporated.  Press the dough evenly into the prepared pan (grease your hand first then pat the dough into place) and bake for 16 to 18 minutes, until the top of the center looks dry.  The bars will puff up, then fall a bit when they come out of the oven.  This is how they should be.

Mix the glaze ingredients while the bars are baking.  When you take the bars out of the oven, immediately pour on the glaze and spread evenly over the bars (a pastry brush will help you with this).  Cool for 15 to 20 minutes before cutting into squares.

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