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Black Bottom Peanut Butter Snickers Pie

  It's Pi Day, it's Pi Day!  And I'm so excited to finally share this with you!

  Seriously, this is by far one of the best things I've ever made (in my book, anyway).  Let me illustrate the layering process for you, and then you'll understand.

  A basic graham cracker crust is our base, its slight crunch does loads for the other creamy textures.  To those whom it may concern, this is the only component containing gluten, but that is easily remedied by just picking up some gluten-free grahams.  

  We move on to a silky layer of chocolate ganache, AKA the "black bottom."  This semi-sweet base seals up any leaks in the graham cracker crust, and is a lovely compliment to its more sugary fellows.

  Next is what I'd definitely consider the star of the show.  Fluffy, cloud-like peanut butter mousse.  If the word mousse intimidates you, that's silly.  Just whip your cream nice and stiff, and all the rest is like mixing up a heavenly sort of frosting.

  And because I just can't stop, we're throwing on chopped Snickers bars and drizzling on more ganache.

  The result is a beautifully rich mess.  But not unbearably so!

  The day I made this baby, I thought for sure the leftovers would be parceled out to the neighbors.  No way could the few members remaining in the family home finish this off.  Boy, was I wrong... three days later, we had an empty pie plate in the fridge.

  One of my college sisters has a birthday and a spring break in a couple weeks, and after hearing about this creation she immediately requested it for her birthday dessert.  Which is big, since she always has mom make her the same cake.

  It's a darned good thing my mom's not a big kitchen fan/drama queen, or there'd be some serious tensions running through this house.

  Aaaand I'm just going to let the photos do some more talking.

  I think you get the gist by now.  Make this.  Just do it.  I can't tell you enough how crucial it is for you to try this dessert.  And if you're any sort of peanut butter and chocolate fan, then you really don't need me to reiterate.

  A Happy Pi Day to you all!  Let me know how you're all celebrating this glorious excuse to make decadent things on a Thursday.  

  P.S. In case you'd like a St. Patrick's-appropriate pie instead, try out this old favorite!  Sweet & Salty Guinness Chocolate Marshmallow Pie.  Also, check out CrazyforCrust's Pi Party, and link up some of your favorite recipes for all to see.

Black Bottom Peanut Butter Snickers Pie
Yield: one 9-inch pie

Ingredients for the crust:
  • 7 graham crackers (use gluten-free graham crackers to make this a totally GF dessert)
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons sugar

Ingredients for the "black bottom":
  • 1 1/3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup chilled whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Ingredients for the peanut butter mousse:
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chilled whipping cream

Ingredients for the topping:
  • 11.5 ounce bag of mini Snickers candy bars, unwrapped and coarsely chopped
  • Leftover "black bottom" ganache for drizzling

For the crust, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray a 9-inch pie pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

Using your food processor, or a rolling pan and plastic Ziploc bag, crush/pulse the graham crackers until very fine.  If using the rolling pin method, transfer the crumbs to a small bowl at this point.  Add the melted butter and sugar and stir/pulse until the mixture resembles moist sand.  Press the mixture on the bottom and up the sides of the greased pie pan in an even layer.  Bake until lightly browned, 12-15 minutes.  Set aside to cool.

For the "black bottom," combine the chocolate chips, whipping cream, corn syrup, and vanilla extract in a small pot over low heat.  Whisk constantly until just melted and smooth.  Spread the chocolate over the crust, reserving a few tablespoons to reheat later for the topping, and smooth with a rubber spatula.  Place in the freezer for about 10-20 minutes, until the ganache has firmed.

Meanwhile, place an empty, medium metal or glass bowl in the freezer with beater attachments for an electric hand mixer.  Allow to chill for at least 10 minutes.

For the peanut butter mousse, combine the peanut butter and cream cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  Beat until well blended.  Beat in the powdered sugar and vanilla extract.  Remove the chilled bowl and beaters from the freezer and add the 1 cup of whipping cream to the bowl.  Beat on high until the cream holds stiff peaks (this can take quite a few minutes).  Fold the whipped cream into the peanut butter mixture in four additions.  Pour over the firmed chocolate ganache (You'll likely have some leftovers, don't use it all if it won't fit.).  Stick in the freezer to firm up for about 10 minutes while you chop up your Snickers bars and reheat your ganache over low heat.

Top with the chopped Snickers bars and drizzle with ganache.  Chill for another 10 minutes or so in the freezer to harden the ganache topping.  Then cover with plastic wrap and keep in the fridge until ready to slice and serve.

Sources: adapted from The Curvy Carrot originally from Bon Appetit, mousse adapted from Epicurious