Feb 23, 2011

Recipe of the Week: Peanut Butter Pie

Today is National Banana Bread Day.  Seriously.  And I would have shared my favorite banana bread recipe, except I already did back in September.  I do plan to bake some banana bread and share the love.  I hope you do, too.

But for today's recipe, I delved back in my mind to a recipe given to me back in the late 1980s by my mother-in-law.  She has a number of nifty culinary tricks and recipes up her sleeve and this not-too-sweet pie was one of her "sleeper" recipes I'm glad she shared with me. You can embellish it with any (or all!) of the options listed below.  But  be sure to try it in its pure, pristine form at least once before you tweak it. You might just get hooked on it as-is.

Memaw Katie's Peanut Butter Pie

1 piecrust (homemade, frozen, or - my favorite - refrigerated)
1 box regular vanilla pudding mix (not instant)

2 eggs
2 cups milk
1/2 cup peanut butter (creamy or crunchy)
1 teaspoon vanilla
whipped topping (I usually use a small tub of Cool-whip but homemade would be excellent.)

Place piecrust in 9" pie plate; pinch edge.  Use a fork to pierce crust in several areas and prevent bubbling.  Bake according to recipe or package directions, until lightly golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool while making the filling.

Mix together vanilla pudding mix and milk in heavy saucepan.  Cook over medium heat until thickened.  Remove from heat and add eggs; stir well to ensure they are cooked through, begin careful to not curdle them.  Add peanut butter and vanilla; stir well to blend.  Pour into prepared pie shell and cool completely.  If not serving immediately, place in refrigerator until ready to serve.  Just before serving, top with whipped topping and cut into pieces.

Option #1: Add 1/2 cup peanut butter or butterscotch or milk chocolate chips to the mixture after stirring through the peanut butter, or sprinkle in pie crust and pour filling over.

Option #2: Use a chocolate graham cracker crust for a chocolate-peanut butter flavor combination.

Option #3:  Spread chocolate syrup or butterscotch syrup on the bottom of the crust, and drizzle more on the top of the whipped topping.

Refrigerate any leftovers immediately.

Happy baking!