Ya’ll hear about the cold front coming in? Ohh, roll your eyes. It’s ok. We’re all hot. “Hot – hot – hot” as Grandma would say. She loved her some Texas, but never stopped complaining about the heat. When my parents come to visit, every time they ask me “How do you stand this heat?”
My response- “I don’t. I stay inside until 8pm.” Work smarter, not harder folks. I work hard for my A/C bill.
Which brings me to one of my favorite summer dessert recipes, Nutty-ella Pie. A fun twist on Grandma’s classic Peanut Butter Pie. I’m darn certain if she had Nutella in her cupboard, she’d be using it. If ya’ll haven’t tried Nutella, it’s right next to the peanut butter at the grocery store; it’s a blend of hazlenuts and chocolate, so delicious! And yes, this is an icebox pie, no oven needed. Between the months of June and August, my oven is purely used as a drying rack, which solves the problem of lack of counter space in my modest kitchen. Turn that thing on and we heat up the whole house, and freeze over the A/C.
Ice box pies are convenient, easy, quick and COOL. When I asked my neighbor what she wanted for her birthday “cake,” she told me I had free reign as long as it had chocolate. Nutty-ella Pie to the rescue. I promise you, if you dare bring the leftovers (I know, WHAT leftovers?) to work, you will be signed up to make this fluffy treat every luncheon ’til the cows come home. Which, frankly, would not be a bad thing due to its simplicity.
Enough chit-chat, here’s the recipe. I guarantee ya’ll will want to try this within the week. Your children will love you. People will offer you cards, gifts, food! You’ll be surprised at how light, fluffy, and refreshing it is. Finally, this pie is highly adaptable. Looking for low-fat? Use reduced fat cream cheese, cool whip, or low fat peanut butter. On second thought, don’t skimp on the best part – only full fat peanut butter or Nutella allowed. Watching your sugar intake? Reduce the powdered sugar, or use Splenda. Or, if you’re going whole hog, just split a piece with your honey!
Start with one brick of cream cheese and 3/4 cup powdered sugar.
Beat until smooth and creamy.
Mmmmmm. Now add 3/4 cup Nutella.
While no one’s looking, lick those measuring cups clean.
Add the Nutella to your cream cheese and powdered sugar.
DON’T STOP BEATING!!!
Beat for three minutes so the mixture becomes light and fluffy.
Now. Resist the urge to wash the beaters.
See? I’m saving you dishes!
In a clean bowl, beat one cup whipping cream, and a teaspoon of vanilla until stiff peaks form.
Don’t beat it too long, or you’ll get butter.
About 3 minutes is good.
Gently fold your whipped cream into the Nutella mixture until thoroghly combined!
THAT’S IT! YOU’RE DONE!!
Isn’t that fast, creamy and delicious?
Resist the urge to taste the batter.
Too late? Oh, you’re in for it now.
Spoon as much batter as you can resist tasting into your 9 inch cookie shell.
Mound it high and perrrty.
Freeze for 4 hours.
Set it out about 20 minutes before you plan on serving it.
Then top with hot fudge, chopped hazelnuts, or shaved chocolate.
~Peace, Love, and Icebox Pies Ya’ll
Hot Fudge Topping
Chocolate Cookie Crust, 9 inch
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup powdered sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
3/4 cup Nutella
1 cup whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
In a bowl, mix the cream cheese and 3/4 cup powdered sugar using electric beaters, about one minute. Add 3/4 cup Nutella and beat until fluffy, about three minutes. Don't stop once it's just combined - three minutes adds air, making it nice and fluffy. In a separate bowl, beat whipping cream, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar until stiff peaks have formed - this takes about 3-4 minutes. Starting with 1/3 of the whipped cream mixture, fold the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture. Once it's combined, add the remaining whipped cream to the chocolate mixture, folding gently until thoroughly mixed. Pour the mixture into a 9 inch cookie crust. Freeze 4 hours or until firm. When ready to serve, let the pie sit out 20 minutes to soften. Top with additional whipped cream, chopped nuts, or simply a drizzle of hot fudge. Be sure to save a piece for yourself, it will go fast!