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No-Bake French Silk Pie

This luscious pie strikes a happy chord for chocoholics and lazy bakers alike. You’ll be surprised how easily it comes together!
By Heather Baird
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Whenever I’m short on time and need something delicious and homemade, I turn to this amazing pie. The original version of French Silk Pie is made with a scratch-made pie crust that gets baked in the oven, but I make it with a no-bake cookie crust. It cuts the kitchen work in half and is every bit as good as the original pie. Whenever I take it to family dinners there’s not a crumb left in the pie pan!

The filling for this pie truly lives up to its name. It’s rich and silky-smooth, and it cooks up in about 10 minutes on the stove-top. Unsweetened baking chocolate is required to get a robust chocolate flavor, so don’t be tempted to substitute baking chips. They won’t give you the flavor or texture that French Silk Pie is known for. Bittersweet chocolate (in block form) is a more suitable substitute, so feel free to use it if you have some on hand.

I love to garnish this pie with chocolate curls, and I’ll show you how to make them! But if you don’t have time for curlicues, then chocolate shavings are a quick and easy garnish. Just grate a little chocolate over the pie using bar chocolate and a hand grater. 

To get started making this pie, you’ll need to first crush your vanilla wafer cookies. You can do this in a food processor or crush them in a bag with your hands. I sometimes use my rolling pin to crush them.

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Combine the cookie crumbs and melted butter in a large bowl. Mix together until the crumbs are moistened and coated with the butter.

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Press the crumbs firmly and evenly into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Chill 10 minutes.

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In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and eggs until blended. I use a whisk, but a spoon will work too.

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Cook over medium heat until an instant-read thermometer reaches 160°F. The mixture should thicken slightly and coat the back of a metal spoon.

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Remove the mixture from the heat and stir in the chocolate until melted and smooth.

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Let the mixture cool slightly and then mix in the butter until well incorporated. Let the mixture cool until just warm, and stir it occasionally as it cools.

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In a large bowl, beat the whipping cream until it begins to thicken. Add the confectioners’ sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.

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After you’re done whipping the cream, divide it in half.

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Fold half of the whipped cream and the chocolate mixture together.

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Pour the filling into the chilled pie crust.

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Top the center of the pie with the remaining whipped cream.

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If you’d like to make the chocolate curls, then melt 1/2 cup of chocolate in the microwave at 30 second intervals until it is smooth. Pour the chocolate onto a large baking sheet, and spread it evenly over the surface. Place the pan in the refrigerator until the chocolate is well set, about 5 minutes. Run a small sharp-edged spatula under a section of the chocolate. If it breaks into shavings then wait 2 to 3 minutes and try again. When the chocolate is the right temperature, it will curl easily as you run the spatula under the chocolate.

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Keep the pie refrigerated until ready to serve and refrigerate the leftovers. (If there are any!)

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