Coconut Cream Pie

by cakeduchess on March 27, 2012 · 36 comments

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There were lazy days recently enjoyed over here; lazy days when I was getting over a flu and my kids were home on spring break. I have so many recipes to share and haven’t had the time to get to it. While I was sick, all I could think of was making a Coconut Cream Pie.

Doesn’t everyone think of thick and dreamy slices of Coconut Cream Pie when they are fighting a fever? I was feeling lethargic and unambitious. For days. I couldn’t shake this flu and I couldn’t get my energy back…but I was dreaming of Italian meringue and coconut.
I had to wait until the fever passed and then it was time to get outside and enjoy the gorgeous weather. And then it was time to start baking. I tried to take as many photos as I could while juggling boiling hot sugar syrup (thank goodness my mom was here when I was making that and was helping me so I could get a photo). And thank goodness my baking assistant Luca was here to help with some mixing. We even cracked an egg that had twin yolks.
My mom said that brings good luck.
It must have brought good baking luck because this pie was AMAZING!:)coconut-cream-pie-2

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I used Martha Stewart’s pie filling. I have seen recipes where the coconut is strained out of the filling. I suppose that is for those that don’t like the crunchy texture in every bite. I happen to adore coconut and didn’t mind the texture one bit. In the recipe I used from Martha she tops her pie with a simple and wonderful whipped cream.
If you prefer something quicker, go ahead and whip some cream to put on top. I just love Italian meringue and it was the perfect way to use the egg whites from the egg yolks used in the filling. You see, some of my mother-in-law Teresa is rubbing off on me. Every ingredient has to be used for something…there should be no waste. And honestly, this Italian meringue is light as a feather and with just the right sweetness. If I were in a rush, I would probably make it again with a whipped cream topping. But this is not the sort of pie to be in a rush to make. I was anxious to slice it and see how it tasted. I should’ve waited a full 6 hours. Two hours after chilling was way too soon. The pie’s filling wasn’t cold enough and it made a messy but delicious slice.
An irresistible pie. A happy spring pie! Hello, spring…we are ready for you and your beautiful days filled with happy and sweet pies. ;)

Coconut Cream Pie
Perfect Pie Crust Ingredients:
pie crust recipe Martha Stewart
*feel free to use a ready made pie crust

Yield: Makes 1 double-crust for a 9-inch pie (I used a deep dish pie plate and this filled it perfectly)

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
3 tablespoons margarine or chilled vegetable shortening
1/4 cup ice water

Hand Method: In a large bowl, sift the flour and salt. Cut the chilled butter and margarine into 1-tablespoon bits and add to the flour. With a pastry cutter, work flour and shortening together until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the ice water little by little pressing the pastry together into a ball. Wrap and chill for at least 1 hour.
It is very important to work the pastry as little as possible. Don’t over handle. A secret to light, flaky pastry is to keep the mixture cool, add as little water as possible, and mix only as much as necessary.
Food Processor Method: Put flour and salt in bowl of machine. Cut butter and margarine into flour. Process a few seconds until mixture resembles coarse meal. Drop by drop add the water, processing very briefly. The whole process would take 20 to 30 seconds. Wrap and chill the pastry for at least 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 425 F. If pastry has been chilled for a long time, let it sit at room temperature for at least 15 minutes before rolling.
Lightly flour a pastry board, marble counter, or kitchen counter. Divide the pastry in half. Pat each piece of pastry into a flat round. Lightly flour the rolling pin. Roll pastry in one direction only, turning pastry continually to prevent it from sticking to the surface.
Using pie plate as a guide, measure rolled-out pastry — it should be slightly larger than the pie plate and 1/8-inch thick. Fold rolled pastry circle in half so you can lift it more easily. Unfold, gently fitting the pastry into the pie plate, allowing pastry to hang evenly over the edge. Fold edges over and flute. Line the dough with foil paper and fill the dough with dried beans or pie weights. Bake at 425 for 10 minutes. Remove the weights and the foil paper and bake another 10 minutes (or until golden). Cool completely on a wire rack.

For the Topping and Filling

1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt (I used sea salt)
2 3/4 cup milk
4 large egg yolks
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2  cups sweetened shredded coconut

Italian Meringue

4 large egg whites, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 water

Coconut Topping:

Decrease the oven temperature to 350 F. Spread 1/2 cup coconut on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until golden, 10 to 12 minutes, tossing occasionally. Don’ t leave the oven for a minute. Check it constantly because it can go from nicely toasted to badly burned in a matter of minutes.

Make filling:

In a medium saucepan, whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, and salt.  Whisk in the milk, and cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until bubbling and thick; about 7 minutes total (you end up cooking it 2 minutes after it comes to a boil.)
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In a medium sized bowl, whisk egg yolks and vanilla until combined.
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Add the milk mixture into the egg yolk mixture in a slow and steady stream. Whisk until completely incorporated. Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until it returns to a boil; about 1-2 minutes.
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Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl and stir in 1 1/4 cups coconut (I didn’t strain my mixture and it was perfectly fine). Pour filling into cooled crust and smooth top.
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Refrigerate until filling is chilled and completely set, about 2 hours (or wrap tightly with plastic and refrigerate, up to 2 days).

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When the filling has cooled for 2 hours, make the Italian meringue.

Add the room temperature egg whites and the cream of tartar to the bowl of a mixer. Before beating the egg whites and cream of tartar, add the sugar and water to a large sauce pan and bring to a boil. Let it simmer without stirring it until a candy thermometer reads 250 F. While it is simmering, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar in the mixer for about 3 minutes. When the sugar syrup reaches 250 F carefully pour it into the mixer with the egg whites and beat until it is thick; about another 4 minutes.

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The total mixing time is about 7 minutes.
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Spread the meringue over the pie filling.
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Toss on the toasted coconut before serving. I ended up chilling the pie for about 5 hours until it was completely set. I attempted to slice it after 2 hours and it was definitely not ready. That’s what I get for being impatient! ENJOY this wonderful pie and enjoy your day. Thanks for the visit and your sweet comments. :)

{ 36 comments… read them below or add one }

Kelli @ The Corner Kitchen March 27, 2012 at 4:35 pm

This looks amazing! I LOVE coconut cream pie!

I recently nominted you for the Versatile Blogger award. I’m so glad to have found your blog and love all the amazing recipes you share!! You can find more info here – http://thecornerkitchen.blogspot.com/2012/03/award.html

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Emily March 27, 2012 at 5:44 pm

This looks amazing. I think of coconut things at Easter time so this is so timely. Glad to hear you are feeling better.

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Bananamondaes March 27, 2012 at 6:34 pm

What a lovely spring pie! Now I’m craving it.

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Kiri W. March 27, 2012 at 8:33 pm

Oooh, I’ll take coconut pie any day of the weak, sick or healthy ;) Looks fantastic!

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Steph March 27, 2012 at 8:52 pm

ooh heavens!! Next time I get sick I’m only eating coconut cream pie!

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decocinasytacones March 27, 2012 at 9:14 pm

I love this dessert. Mouthwatering!!!
Love from Spain
Marialuisa

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glutwin March 27, 2012 at 10:17 pm

This is simply the most beautiful pie I have ever seen. Your photography is superlative…and your pie-crusts yield perfect results…everytime…They are my “go-to” bookmarked crust recipes…and your descriptions of the “process” make them fool-proof. Thank you for another idea which sings of Spring!

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Cake Duchess March 27, 2012 at 10:27 pm

Thank you so much, Glutwin! Your comment keeps me motivated during a time I’m not feeling the most blog motivated.Very kind words and I so appreciate you being a fan:)

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Amy March 27, 2012 at 11:11 pm

This pie looks delicious! I love a good coconut cream pie piled high (which is important) with lots of coconut! I would love a large slice!

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Happy When Not Hungry March 27, 2012 at 11:47 pm

Coconut cream pie is my favorite kind of pie. This looks beautiful!!!!!

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Our eating Habits March 28, 2012 at 12:09 am

Yum, that looks like one great pie!

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The Chef Doc March 28, 2012 at 12:15 am

This is a beautiful pie! I’ve been looking through recipes because I’m catering a baby shower on Saturday where the guest of honor is requesting a banana cream pie. Maybe I’ll make one of those and one of these :-) Thank you so much for sharing this recipe with us. And your MIL sounds a lot like my mom–she never likes to waste anything!

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Shulie March 28, 2012 at 12:35 am

Coconut cream pies are our all time favorite pie. I also love MS’s pastry cream it is probably one of the more successful ones. A Thanksgiving doe not go by without a coconut cream pie at our table and sometimes we have in addition a banana one. This looks wonderful Lora.

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Pegasuslegend March 28, 2012 at 12:56 am

my favorite pie of all time…. and even better with the kids helping!

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Becky March 28, 2012 at 1:40 am

Your pie is gorgeous, and there is nothing better than Coconut Cream Pie!

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Steve @ the black peppercorn March 28, 2012 at 1:44 am

Oh my. This looks amazing!! Love coconut cream pie. I also love seeing the little ones helping out. So great to see. BTW – thanks for the stumble!

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Sue March 28, 2012 at 3:07 am

Beautiful pie, perfect for springtime, Lora! Such a cute little helper:)

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Missy ~Cooking For Two March 28, 2012 at 3:46 am

I feel like I can taste this pie just reading this post. SO lovely – thank you!

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Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. March 28, 2012 at 3:55 am

I have never had a coconut cream pie. I know, what the heck?!! I love coconut too. Definitely need to try this!

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Barbara | Creative Culinary March 28, 2012 at 5:03 am

One of my favorite pies ever; even without that gorgeous little boy helping me!

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Baker Street March 28, 2012 at 5:42 am

Coconut pie has been on my mind for a very long time now! and this looks incredible Lora. I’ve tried martha’s pastry cream and its absolutely divine.

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Jennie @themessybakerblog March 28, 2012 at 1:10 pm

This pie looks amazing, and so easy to make. Lovely photos.

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A Thought For Food March 28, 2012 at 1:25 pm

I can’t wait for the day when we get to make some pie together and enjoy it with a cup of tea. The thought makes me smile. :-)

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Lemons and Anchovies March 28, 2012 at 2:35 pm

Oh, I would use the meringue, too. I’m so enamored with it right now. Coconut cream pie is one of my favorites–I wouldn’t change a thing with your recipe.

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Monet March 28, 2012 at 3:52 pm

Oh how dreamy! I could use one of these too. Just lovely. Thank you for sharing, sweet friend. I hope you are doing well. I’ve been thinking of you this week.

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Sherry March 28, 2012 at 3:55 pm

You have inspired me to make one. I’ve been thinking about coconut cream pie for the longest time, but no one in my family (except me!) likes coconut.

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Jen @ The Scrumptious Pumpkin March 28, 2012 at 6:53 pm

Looks beautiful and perfect for spring! :)

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mellissina2 March 28, 2012 at 10:36 pm

Hú ez nagyon finom lehet!Ami kókusz az csak isteni,de sajnos nem vagyok jó viszonyban a kókusszal.Allergia!Csak álmodozom róla!

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Carolyn March 29, 2012 at 1:13 am

You know, I keep meaning to try coconut cream pie, because I think I could make a decent low carb version. YOu’ve inspired, Lora!

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Sara{OneTribeGourmet} March 29, 2012 at 5:32 am

My all time favorite is the coconut cream pie and I love how your two lil ones help you in the kitchen! Happy Birthday to your handsome baby boy! XX

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Julia April 2, 2012 at 9:38 pm

I didn’t previously think of pillowy, soft, sweet, creamy, coconut cream pie when I am sick. But, NOW I will!

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Paula April 3, 2012 at 11:00 pm

If a fabulous looking and delicious tasting pie could make you feel on top of the world then you must be feeling a lot better. This is gorgeous.

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Anonymous September 29, 2012 at 2:03 am

Thank-you for this wonderful recipe. I’ve made it twice and it turns out better and better every time. Merci!

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Laura Dembowski May 26, 2013 at 3:34 pm

I made coconut cream pie awhile ago and am still thinking about how good it was! I love the addition of Italian meringue – it’s my favorite thing to make and eat. I always look for double yolk eggs, but I’ve never seen one.

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Stephanie June 16, 2013 at 11:29 am

Please disregard my previous comment about the “sugar”. The ingredients for the filling says to use 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract. The instructions for the filling does not specify when to add the vanilla extract.

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cakeduchess June 17, 2013 at 3:42 am

I adjusted the vanilla part. Enjoy the pie!

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