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July 18, 2011 / Kate

Orange Chocolate Chunk Treacle Tart

Y2, Week Eight: Dessert Which Shall Not Be Named Pie

A few months back my niece got a new betta fish and I very desperately wanted her to name it “Fish Who Shall Not Be Named.” I was shameless in my promotion of this idea. I lost. The fish was named “Ira.” IRA?! * You simply cannot instill the proper fear and respect in the other fishes with a name like Ira. Maybe you can do their taxes, but you cannot cause them to blanch at the mere thought of your terrible awesomeness. Sigh. I’m trying to recover from the setback.

I’m also trying to recover from that fact that there will be no more Harry Potter films, which helped me delay the recovery process that was necessitated by the fact that there will be no more Harry Potter books. We’re facing a world with no new Harry Potter-something! You see why I so badly needed the fish properly named? Have they started a radio version yet? Maybe a web series?? I’ll volunteer the fish for a guest appearance. C’mon people, let’s keep this thing going! I’ll start with this, my version of Hogwarts’ magical treacle tart. It’s even made by House Elves. Well, a house elf. Well, he’s really short and if you give him sugar and a sock he’ll love you forever.

I’m off to try to start an upper midwest Quidditch league and invite Alan Rickman over for pie.

Local Foodstuffs:

* I can’t be too upset. The name Ira comes from “Ira Sleeps Over”, which is one of the best storybooks ever written. My niece and nephew love it as much as my sister and I did when we were kids. And if you are the kind of story reader who likes to employ special character voices, this book has an excellent opportunity in Ira’s know-it-all big sister.


Sweet Pie Pastry

(adapted from Sweet Pie Pastry from “The New York Times Cookbook”)

1 cup flour
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 large egg
1 rounded tsp grated orange zest
2-3 tbsp of cold water (use only if the crust is too crumbly)

Sift flour into a mixing bowl. Make a well in the center of the flour and add the remaining ingredients leaving out the water. Mix the center ingredients with a pastry blender until they are combined. Quickly work in the surrounding flour, adding the water if the dough is too dry.

Turn dough out of the bowl onto a lightly floured surface and knead a couple of times.

Shape the dough into flattened round; wrap tightly in plastic. Refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight. Remove dough from the refrigerator and allow to warm slightly (about 15 minutes). In a greased pie pan, pat out dough with floured fingertips onto bottom and up and over (slightly) the sides in an even 1/4-inch layer. Bringing the dough up and over the sides of the pan will help keep the crust from being pulled down the sides as it shrinks during baking. (If mixture sticks to your fingers, spread a sheet of plastic wrap over it and pat through plastic wrap.) Prick bottom of shell all over with a fork, then chill until firm, at least 30 minutes.

Treacle Filling

What is treacle?
2 cups fresh breadcrumbs made from whole wheat bread
2 cups golden syrup (pale treacle) (can be found in the maple syrup section of some supermarkets — Woodman’s in Madison has it — or can be ordered online)
2 large eggs
2 tbsp whole milk
1 tbsp orange zest
2 tbsp orange juice
1/8 tsp orange extract
1 tsp dark molasses (“full” or “robust”, but not blackstrap) or dark treacle
Large pinch of salt
3 oz bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, broken into small pieces

Prepare fresh breadcrumbs by baking approximately 8 slices of wheat bread in a 250° oven for 10 minutes. Allow to cool, then pulverize slices into fine breadcrumbs using a food processor.

Increase oven temperature to 350°.

Whisk together golden syrup, eggs, milk, zest, juice, molasses, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Stir in breadcrumbs and 2 oz of the chocolate. Pour filling into prepared crust; distribute the remaining chocolate evenly over the top of the filling.

Cover the edges of the crust with foil to protect it from burning and bake until center is set for approximately 50 minutes. Cool on a rack before serving.

It’s best served with vanilla ice cream — it is national ice cream month after all.



Leave a Comment
  1. Michael / Jul 18 2011 9:38 am

    Impressive. This looks delicious! And, I’d listen to Alan Rickman read the phone book.

  2. The Friendly Foodie Girl / Jul 22 2011 12:42 am

    This looks sensational! I too am suffering from the seperation of my world from the world of Harry Potter (I was exceptionally sad after the last book and now I am more sad after watching the last movie). I am all for keeping things going! Even though I feel like I am saying goodbye to a part of my childhood (as well as many of my teenage years, and young adulthood) I am planning to do the best I can to preserve Harry Potter, for the next generation =)
    Kudos to you (and your house elf) for a great looking pie. Perhaps JK Rowling, herself, will be inspired to write something more!

    • Kate / Jul 23 2011 3:13 pm

      The pie was really good; we ate it with ice cream in my friend’s 90° apt after going to see part 2. It actually worked “warm” as the chocolate was nicely melty. And I would happily make Rowling a pie a week if she’d give us more Potterverse stories! Have you read Pullman’s “His Dark Materials” trilogy? It helped me with withdrawal back in the day when you had to wait between HP books.

  3. The Friendly Foodie Girl / Jul 26 2011 12:40 pm

    Mmmm, melty chocolate! I’m sold! I haven’t read Pullman’s series, I’ve only seen The Golden Compass (I rarely make a habit of seeing the movie before I read the book, but this time I did, so I don’t know how they compare. What’s your opinion?) and I enjoyed it, so I’ll definitely check out the books seeing that it is offered as a remedy from a fellow Potterverse fan! P.S.- Have you heard about Pottermore? ( Maybe it’ll help…maybe =)

    • Kate / Jul 29 2011 5:01 pm

      The books are waaaaaaaaay better. I actually had trouble watching the movie because it differed so much from the text. And I have heard of Pottermore, though I’m dubious. It just seems like another way of presenting the stuff we already have… :-/

  4. Deanna / Jul 31 2011 10:08 am

    I love Harry Potter and I can’t wait to make this. It sounds delicious!

  5. Lisa Lyons, Budala Communications / Aug 3 2011 1:33 am

    Kate, do you think that some kind of “healthy bread” like Vogel’s Soy & Flaxseed bread would work as well? I am trying to go on a low-glycemic index diet and am shying away from traditional wheat breads (could have gluten intolerance, the jury is still out on that). Everything else in the ingredients (including my fave Lyle’s Golden Syrup!) is actually ok as long as I don’t mainline it. Let me know what you think, thanks!

    Also, did you by any chance see the recipe online for Prince William’s “grooms cake” for his wedding? It was made with chocolate digestive biscuits and is basically a no-bake refrigerator pie. Who knew? Makes me love him and Kate even more!

    • Kate / Aug 10 2011 11:13 am

      Yes, I think you could use just about any bread in this recipe. You’re drying it out to breadcrumbs anyway. The type bread you use will certainly affect the overall taste of the pie, but if it works with the orange and chocolate flavors, go for it!

      And I did see the groom’s cake — it was awesome!

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