Earl Grey Pie say whaaaaat?! I was so excited when I began to formulate on how to make this pie. I have a friend’s wedding coming up on Saturday and I was asked to make pies for the reception as the wedding is on March 14, 3/14, 3.14 aka Pi Day or Pie Day!
One kind of pie that was requested was an Earl Grey Pie. It starts off with a flaky pie crust, then a layer of chocolate ganache. Once that has set, the earl grey pastry cream is added and topped off with whipping cream and pistachios. It is a little bit high maintenance in that there are so many different layers going on, but the result is worth it.
I decided to adapt my own traditional vanilla custard pastry cream into an earl grey pastry cream. The only difference between this earl grey and the vanilla is that you steep the milk with the tea bags as opposed to vanilla. The result is a fragrant velvety pie to be shared around the table!
Update: For a Step by Step photo tutorial, see my post on Earl Grey Pastry Cream!
Earl Grey Pie
recipe inspired by Pie Hole, Los Angeles & Pasadena
Flaky Pie Crust
recipe from Tartine Bakery
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c very cold water (I placed in freezer for 5-10 min)
1 1/2 c + 1 Tbsp flour
1/2 c + 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
Dissolve salt in water and keep refrigerated until needed. In a food processor, pulse the butter and flour until it forms large crumbs. Slowly add in water while pulsing, until it loosely holds together. Roll it together so that it holds, wrap in sarane wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. When completely chilled, roll out to be 1/8 in thick and cover the pie tins. Use the back of a knife to cut off any excess dough. Use a knife to prick the bottom of the crust. Line the tops with parchment paper and weigh it down with baking weights (beans, rice, etc). Bake for 20-25 min, until golden brown around the sides. Remove the parchment paper and bake for 5 more min, until all moisture has evaporated from the crust. Allow the crust to cool completely on a wire rack.
Earl Grey Pastry Cream
adapted from Tartine Bakery’s Pastry Cream
2 cups milk
5 bags Earl Grey Tea Bags (I use Twinings Earl Grey)
1/4 tsp salt
5 Tbsp cornstarch
1/2 c sugar
4 Tbsp unsalted butter
1/2 c heavy whipping cream
2 Tbsp sugar
Heat the milk, tea bags, and salt in a sauce pan on low for 5-10 minutes, constantly stirring until the color turns a medium-light grey color. If some tea leaves fall out, it is okay, you will strain it out later. Once it has reached the desired color, remove tea bags and bring the milk to a gentle boil. Take it off the heat and strain the milk into a separate bowl to remove any bits of burt milk or tea leaves. Meanwhile, whisk the sugar, cornstarch, sugar, and eggs in a medium bowl until thick and smooth. Add half of the boiling milk into the sugar mixture to temper the eggs, then return this mixture into the saucepan along with the rest of the milk. Whisk continuously on medium high heat until the cornstarch cooks and the mixture is thickened. Remove from heat and add butter and whisk until smooth and completely incorporated. Pour into a heatproof bowl and place plastic wrap on the surface of the cream to cool to avoid the creation of a “skin” layer. Allow to cool completely before using, about 3-4 hours. The cooled earl grey pastry cream should be very firm, needing to be lightened with whipped cream before using.
Once ready to use, whip up the whipping cream with remaining 2 Tbsp of sugar until thick. Scoop out the pastry cream and whisk in the whipping cream until completely smooth.
1 fully cooled pie shell
1/2 c chocolate chips
1/4 c heavy whipping cream
Earl Grey Pastry Cream
1/2 c ready to whip whipping cream (I recommend Pastry Pride)
Small handful pistachios, roughly chopped
Heat up the heavy whipping cream in a heatproof bowl until it is bubbly. Add in chocolate chips and stir until smooth. Using a pastry brush, brush the chocolate onto the pie shell and allow it to cool completely.
Whip up the ready to whip whipping cream until it holds a stiff peak. Meanwhile, take the earl grey pastry cream and fill the pie. Smooth out the top. Take the stiff peak ready to whip whipping cream and spoon onto the top and spread it out. Decorate with pistachios. Serve cold.