Thanksgiving is merely a few weeks away and we gotta get ready! Today I couldn’t be more excited to share these Cacio e Pepe Mashed Potatoes with you all. They’re buttery, peppery, slightly tart and utterly perfect.
For this post, I teamed up with Le Creuset!! Woohoo! I have always loved my Le Creuset cookware and have used it all up on this blog over and over and over again. Le Creuset is truly my kitchen ally. I love it for numerous reasons but here are just a few:
– My Le Creuset cookware is incredibly multi-functional. I use the Dutch ovens to make everything from arroz con pollo to soups to—in this case—boiling potatoes. – Since Le Creuset is so beautiful, it’s easy to take it from oven or stove directly to the table. – The enamel coating on the inside of their cookware make them super easy to clean. A few light scrubs and BOOM…squeaky clean, looking like new!
In this post, I’m using their gorgeous Dutch oven in the color Truffle. And while I absolutely think it’s possible to put the Dutch oven on the table, it was a bit dark inside and wasn’t photographing the way I wanted so I transferred it to the 2 1/4-quart braiserin Persimmon.
These fall colors are a gorgeous addition to my Thanksgiving autumnal table.
I think it’s time to jump into the mood!
What is Cacio e Pepe?
Let’s tackle the basics: Cacio e Pepe which literally translates to “cheese and pepper.” It’s a dish that hails from Rome, italy and it’s typically super simple. It involves a bucatini pasta tossed in a simple sauce of Pecorino Romano, black pepper, salt and starch water from boiling the pasta. It’s ridiculously simple but like all simple dishes, the technique and precision is everything.
The autumn shift is happening all around us! Pumpkins and gourds are starting to show up at the markets, watermelon is now very bland and lacks any sort of sweetness, melons are slowly fading, and while LA has temperatures that are still kicking, there have been a few mornings that have felt brisk. Autumn is so close!
I wanted to kick this season off with these Chocolate Cardamom Morning Rolls with Artisan Collection by Nestlé® Toll House®. Their two luxurious options are: Extra Semi-Sweet and Extra Dark. Both are really delicious. I’ve used them in a few baked goods and the chocolate is rich and has amazing deep flavor. These baking chips are made from single-origin chocolate from Ghana and are available now! Ghana is fortunate in having wonderful rich soil, making it ideal for its top exporter: cocoa beans. The chocolate is really high-quality and pairs with all sorts of flavors like caramel, walnuts, cinnamon, honey and more!
This recipe for Instant Pot Cuban Black Bean soup is fire for so many reasons! But before we dive into the recipe let’s talk about why I love this soup so very much.
Cuban black beans might be my favorite food to get in all of Florida. They truly are the food of South Florida. While my family isn’t Cuban, we spent a lot of family celebrations at Cuban restaurants. They were our go-to. And the black bean soup was always a favorite (along my other favorites like ropa vieja and picadillo (recipe coming soon!)).
The most critical part of Cuban black bean soup?
The sofrito. In this instance it’s a combo of red onions, green bell pepper, garlic and some spices that give the beans some good flavor. Beans by themselves are notoriously bland so you definitely have to gussy them up with lots of spices and a healthy amount of salt.
I posted this recipe for this French Silk Pie on The Instagram last Thanksgiving and realized I never properly posted the recipe here; you know, in real printable, easily-readable form. I like things to live here, too, especially given how Instagram captions can’t be rich-pinned and easily searchable. So here we are.
This pie is perfect for literally every time of year. If it’s summer and you don’t want to warm up the oven, you only have to do it for the crust. A very short amount of time!
If it’s the holidays or Thanksgiving, this is also a perfect pie. Not a ton of oven space? This is nearly a no-bake pie.
French Silk Pie Facts
French silk pie is technically an icebox cake. It gets its name from it’s silky texture. Makes sense, right?
There is raw egg in this pie! The only big heads up you need to know about this pie is there is indeed raw egg in this dessert.
When using raw eggs of any kind I always recommend opting for organic eggs or the best quality and freshest you can get your hands on. You know, for safety.
I don’t always bake with organic eggs but for something like this, it’s definitely my move.
French Silk Pie is The Perfect Make Ahead Dessert
This recipe for French Silk Pie truly is a great make-ahead recipe; something we’re all looking for when gatherings like summer parties or Thanksgiving/Friendsgiving get-togethers are in the future.
I like to keep it in the fridge with a piece of plastic wrap or parchment pressed to its surface. It’ll get a bit messed up when you remove the plastic wrap but you can definitely smooth it out again with a butter knife or off-set spatula.
How to Make French Silk Pie
Start with the crust. What I love about this pie is that it uses a cookie crust, which is WAY easier than baking off traditional pie crust.
Melt the chocolate. In a double-boiler, add the chopped chocolate to a bowl nestled on top of a saucepan filled with a few inches of water.
Beat the other wet ingredients. Mix together the butter, sugar, vanilla extract and salt.
Add the melted chocolate.
Crack in the eggs. One at a time, add the eggs and keep beating the mixture until the mixture is super fluffy.
Transfer the filling to the pie dish. Pour in the chocolate mixture into the baked off pie crust. And then transfer to the fridge to chill.
Serve. Right before you’re ready to serve, make the whipped cream and add it to the top of the pie. I added the whipped cream to a piping bag to give a pretty effect. And then shaved on some chocolate using a vegetable peeler.
Classic French Silk Pie that is so very chocolatey and smooth. This pie is a perfect make-ahead pie for summer or Thanksgiving. Topped with fluffy whipped cream and shavings of chocolate.
2cupsgraham cracker crumbs
Pinch of kosher salt
1/2cupunsalted butter, melted
3ouncesmilk or dark chocolate
12tablespoonsunsalted butter, room temperature
3/4cupwhite granulated sugar
1teaspoonpure vanilla extract
1cup heavy cream
1ounces milk chocolate, for topping
To Make the Crust:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place the crumbs and salt in a medium bowl. Pour in the butter and mix until the gingersnap crumbs are moist. Transfer to 14-inch x 5-inch tart pan, 9-inch tart pan or 9-inch pie dish. Press the crumbs firmly and evenly until they line the bottom and sides of the pan or dish. Bake until slightly darker in color and mostly firm to the touch, about 5 minutes. Allow the crust to cool completely before adding the filling.
To Make the Filling:
In a double boiler (or a stainless steel bowl placed over a saucepan filled with a few inches of water), add the chopped chocolate. When mostly melted, remove from the heat and stir until smooth. Allow to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand-up mixer with the paddle attachment on, add the butter, sugar, vanilla extract and salt. Beat until smooth, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Pour in the mostly cooled melted chocolate and beat until combined. And then add one egg, allowing it to beat for a full 5 minutes. And then add another egg and beat for an additional 5 minutes. Set a timer! During this time, the eggs will help the mixture double in volume and make it nice and fluffy. Add the last egg and beat for one last time for 5 minutes. Remove from the mixer and give it a mix manually just to make sure there aren’t any chocolate bits not combined.
Transfer to the crust and spread into an even layer. Place in the fridge to chill for about 5 hours, until very chilled.
When you’re ready to serve, add the heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar to a bowl of a stand-up mixer with the whisk attachment. Beat until light and fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the top of the pie and garnish with shavings of Moser Roth Milk Chocolate.
Every now and then I wonder what it would be like to own a restaurant. And what my restaurant would look and feel like. I think about what I would serve, what my story would be, what the decor would look like. And then I immediately remember the skinny profit margins, back-breaking work, my lack of experience in that area and tell myself that I’m crazy lol. The idea soon flies out the window! My family thanks me.
But if I did in theory own a restaurant, this would be on the menu. Food like this would be served. It’s a roasted chicken with flavors of Peruvian pollo a la brasa, my favorite chicken ever. But served over a bread salad, reminiscent of Zuni Cafe. It would be a merging of cultures, both of which I identify with and are mine. (Maybe San Francisco isn’t my culture but you know what I mean!) I would say that my food and the food I would want to serve leans feminine. This is an attribute by the way. Girly food is dope.