DEAR SOS: In 1987 we stayed at the Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Penn. At one of our dinners we were served a wonderful white chocolate-coconut cream pie. Can you possibly get their recipe?
--MRS. J. E. F.
DEAR MRS. J. E. F.: Move over, the pie has another fan. What a terrific dessert. I've put it high on my list of great cream pies.
HOTEL HERSHEY WHITE
CHOCOLATE-COCONUT CREAM PIE
2 cups flaked coconut
2 cups milk
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons flour
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 (9-inch) baked pie shell
1 1/2 to 2 cups whipping cream
Dash powdered sugar
White chocolate curls
Finely chop coconut flakes. Combine milk with vanilla and bring to boil. Remove from heat and let cool 5 minutes. Strain.
Bring milk back to boil. Beat eggs and add sugar and flour. Mix in some hot milk and return to boiling milk, stirring until mixture comes again to boil. Remove from heat. Stir in butter and coconut.
Fill pie shell with coconut-milk mixture. Cool. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
Whip cream with powdered sugar until stiff peaks form. Spread whipped cream over pie. Spread white chocolate curls on top of whipped cream after cutting slices from pie. Makes 1 (9-inch pie).
DEAR SOS: Would you possibly have in your files a recipe for a vegetable pate made with eggplant and tomato puree? I used to purchase a brand in a specialty store that is no longer stocking it, and I would like to make my own for gifts this holiday season.
DEAR ROSIE: Eggplant Caviar or "cowboy caviar," as it is sometimes called, is an inexpensive yet glamorous appetizer for holiday parties.
2 medium eggplants
1 cup water
1 cup drained canned tomatoes
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon capers
Few drops hot pepper sauce
1 tablespoon minced onion
1 teaspoon sugar
Peel and slice eggplants. Cook in 1 cup water until tender. Drain and mash. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, garlic, lemon juice, vinegar, oil, capers, hot sauce, onion and sugar. Chill several hours or overnight. Serve as spread for bread or crackers. Makes 2 1/3 cups.
DEAR SOS: Would it be possible to obtain a recipe for English Muffins? I'd really appreciate it.
DEAR MINDY: There is nothing like a batch of English Muffins hot from the oven for brunch or special breakfast.
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees)
1 package dry yeast
6 cups flour
Scald milk. Stir in sugar, salt and butter. Cool to 105 to 115 degrees. Sprinkle yeast in warm water, stir to dissolve yeast. Add dissolved yeast to milk mixture. Ad white flour.
Dough will be soft and slightly sticky. Knead slightly and place in greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover with damp cloth and let rise in warm place until doubled in bulk.
Punch down dough and divide in half. On board well sprinkled with cornmeal, roll or pat each half of dough into 1/2-inch thickness. Cut into circles with floured 32-inch cookie cutter.
Turn muffins over on board so both sides are covered with cornmeal. Place about 1 inch apart on baking sheets and sprinkle with cornmeal. Let rise in warm place, free of draft, until doubled in bulk, about 30 minutes.
Place on medium-hot griddle or skillet (cornmeal side down). Bake until well-browned, about 10 minutes on each side. Makes 18 muffins.