Our last Private Pie Club meeting's theme was "Local Tipples"
I am a HUGE real ale fan and always have been, so this theme really excited me. Beer and pie are obvious partners but i was really excited about how our members were going to be creative with the theme.
I had set my heart on making a sweet pie with beer, but wasn't quite sure how to go about it. As usual, the first step in researching was google, and i stumbled across this beer cream pie blog post. I knew this was the one.
I was fairly short of time, so I ended up making the pies for the meeting the night before without doing a practice run. I was a bit nervous to start with that it was all going to go horribly wrong, which may explain the events that followed.
I merrily made a chocolate shortcrust pastry and blind baked the crust. Nothing untoward here.
Then I mixed the melted chocolate with the porter and brushed a good thick layer of this divine stuff onto the pastry case. Again, all went smoothly. The porter i was using was Hadrian and Borders Ouseburn porter.
Then it came to making the custard. Here, total panic and disaster struck, as the custard just wouldn't set at all (in reality, I think i was too impatient and didn't really let it cool down as much as i should before taking action). For some reason, it seemed like a good plan to put some gelatin in... So in went one sachet... Then i thought i needed some more (again i clearly hadn't left it for long enough to make this decision rationally)... and some more.... so in total i put in three sachets of gelatin.
Eventually, the custard started setting... And then it continued setting, then set a bit more. Undeterred, I
went ahead and decorated the tart with some of the leftover porter chocolate mixture and some gold leaf. It looked pretty good in the end:
The verdict at pie club was that it tasted nice, but had a very odd texture. Emergency gelatin really wasn't a good plan at all. One member put it very nicely: "I think you might have invented a new material for breast implants"