My mom, Evely Laser Shlensky, is an adventurous cook, often trying recipes from different cultures and experimenting with new ingredients. Like me, she is always tweaking recipes and adding her own spin on them, and I can’t ever remember her making a bad meal. (She was also the inspiration behind my family dinner planning service, The Six O’Clock Scramble.)
I remember when my mom went through her clay pot phase, cooking Indonesian recipes in an unwieldy terra cotta vessel that seemed like way more effort than it was worth, although her clay pot ginger chicken was delicious.
But when it comes to desserts, she sticks with her favorites and doesn’t diverge from the recipes. I can really only think of five desserts she ever made, and four of them are pies (the fifth are brownies), and all are perfectly delicious. On Thanksgiving, we always followed the big traditional meal with her pecan and chocolate pies. (I speak of it in the past tense because we usually spend Thanksgiving with my husband’s family now.)
I guess there are two kinds of people, those who like pecan pies and those who don’t, and I happen to fall into the latter category (sorry, Mom!). But that leaves me with a fabulous alternative, her decadent and creamy French Silk Chocolate Pie that she has been making as long as I can remember. My mom originally got both the chocolate and the pecan pie recipes from an American friend she met when my dad was stationed in the army in Germany from 1964 – 66, and she has been making these pies ever since. (She still has the original recipe card that was handwritten by her friend Janet Hudson, who, like my mom, was the wife of a psychiatrist in the army also stationed in Germany.)
When I think of her making chocolate pie, I can almost hear the beaters of her ancient electric mixer whirring for ages as she blended the creamy filling and later the whipped cream to go on top of it, while we kids got excited about the meal and especially dessert.
Today I share my mom’s recipe for French Silk Chocolate Pie. Perhaps you’ll see fit to add it to your Thanksgiving dessert table this year, too.