This is a recipe I’ve been meaning to try since probably the first year of SMiLes by Meg. Before I acquired any of the multitude of kitchen gadgets that currently define my baking. Before I had Amazon Prime. Before I felt confident enough to try a recipe that involved 3 separate internal recipes.
But I’ve grown in the last 5 years, as has my kitchen gadget collection, and with the Patriots going to the Super Bowl, I was finally felt ready to make it: Crack Pie.
I first had Crack Pie when visiting Marj in NYC after college. She brought me to Momofuku Milk Bar and insisted I try it. They don’t really tell you what the flavor is when you’re there, and I’m not sure I can describe it to you now. Other than it’s extremely addicting. But ever since then, I’ve wanted to make it.
Shortly after that trip, I did find the recipe online, but once I read all of the steps, I was deterred. I didn’t have a food processor. Or a stand mixer. And where was I going to find corn powder? That’s not a thing. And I had to separate 8 eggs successfully?? This was not a recipe for early-blog Meg.
Now, though, I do have all of those things (Thanks, Mom!), and Amazon Prime sent me some freeze-dried corn, which could be blitzed into corn powder quickly. More importantly, the week leading up to Super Bowl I had time.
The recipe starts by making an oat cookie that you’ll later grind up to make a crust. I made the cookie on Friday night. I assembled the rest of the pie on Saturday, and froze it Saturday night. It’s now thawing in the fridge, ready to go to a Super Bowl party in an hour after I dust it with some confectioners sugar. The second pie (the recipe makes two) is living in my freezer for the foreseeable future, which it can do for a month or two, giving me a ready-to-go dessert next time I have people over!
So let’s get going on that oat cookie. First, beat the butter, brown sugar, and sugar on medium-high speed of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment for 2 to 3 minutes, until light and fluffy.
Add the egg yolk and beat for 1 to 2 more minutes.
With the mixer on low speed, add the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix until dough comes together.
Spread the dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper until it’s about 1/4 inch thick.
Bake at 350°F for 15 minutes. Allow to cool, then wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate.
When you’re ready to do the pie, the first step is to make the crust. To do that, start by breaking up the oat cookie and putting it in a food processor with light brown sugar and salt. Pulse until it’s the texture of wet sand.
Transfer the crumb mixture to a large bowl and mix in the melted butter with a wooden spoon.
Divide the mixture between two pie tins and press into the bottom and sides.
With that done, you now have to make the filling. This part takes some willful ignorance if you ever want to actually eat the final product. I almost don’t want to tell you all what goes into a Crack Pie, but there must be at least a couple readers out there who, like me, are not dissuaded by butter, cream, and egg yolks.
First, to make corn powder, quickly blitz some freeze-dried corn in a mini chop until finely ground.
Then, whisk together the sugar, light brown sugar, milk powder, corn powder, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer.
With the mixer on low, add the (2 sticks!) of melted butter, and continue to beat on low speed for a couple of minutes until smooth.
With the mixer still on low, add the heavy cream and vanilla extract and continue to mix for 2 to 3 minutes.
Finally, with the mixer still on low, add the egg yolks and beat until just combined.
Divide the filling between the two pie crusts and spread to smooth.
Place the two pies on a baking sheet and bake at 350°F for 15 minutes. Then, lower the oven temperature to 325°F and bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes. The edges should be set and the center should still be jiggly.
Remove from oven and cool to room temperature on a wire rack.
Wrap the pies in plastic wrap and freeze for at least 3 hours, but better overnight. About an hour before serving, transfer the pie to the fridge to thaw for a bit. Dust with confectioners sugar and serve cold.
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1 1/2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
- 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
- pinch baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Oat Cookie
- 1 tablespoon light brown sugar, packed
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1/4 cup milk powder
- 1/4 cup corn powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 cup butter, melted
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 8 egg yolks
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter, brown sugar, and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.
- Add the egg yolk and continue beating until well-incorporated.
- On low speed, add the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and beat until dough comes together.
- Spread dough out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper until 1/4 inch thick.
- Bake at 350°F for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool before wrapping in plastic wrap and refrigerating.
- In a food processor, pulse the oat cookie, brown sugar, and salt until it forms the texture of wet sand. Transfer crumb mixture into a large bowl.
- In the large bowl, add melted butter and mix with a wooden spoon until distributed.
- Divide mixture between two pie tins and press into bottoms and sides.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the sugar, brown sugar, milk powder, corn powder, and salt.
- With the mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mixing on low speed, add the melted butter and mix for 1 to 2 minutes until everything is moistened.
- With the mixer still running on low speed, add the heavy cream and vanilla extract and mix for 2 to 3 minutes.
- With the mixer still running on low speed, add the egg yolks and beat until just combined.
- Divide the filling between the two pie crusts and spread to smooth.
- Place the two pies on a baking sheet. Bake at 350°F for 15 minutes.
- After 15 minutes, reduce the heat to 325°F and continue baking for 10 to 15 minutes, until edges are set and center is still a bit jiggly.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.
- Wrap the pies in plastic wrap and freeze for at least three hours, preferably overnight.
- An hour before serving, transfer the pie to the fridge to thaw. Serve cold, dusted with confectioners sugar.