If you’re in need of some inspiration for KCRW’s Good Food Pie Contest coming up on Sunday, October 4, we’ve got a sweet, little fix for you. One of this year’s pie contest judges, Ann Kirk, who is the pastry chef at Little Dom’s, Dominick’s and 101 Coffee Shop, shared with us her inventive take on chess pie.
Ann’s Citrus Chess Pie filling calls for lemons and oranges or tangerines, which can be substituted for any combination of citrus. It’s a lovely dessert that makes the most of Southern California’s citrus bounty. Check out your local farmers’ market, and you’ll find lots of wonderful varieties to experiment with.
We’ll leave it to you to get creative and come up with your own winning version.
Citrus Chess Pie Filling
10 oz cup sugar (about 1½ cup)
3 tbsp polenta
1 tbsp all-purpose flour
3/4 cup tangerine or orange juice*
2 ea lemons, zested
1 ea tangerine or orange, zested*
1 tbsp lemon juice
4 oz butter, melted (1 stick)
¼ cup crème fraîche
To assemble pie filling mixture: In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients. Make a well and crack eggs into center. Whisk together and pull dry ingredients toward center until entire mixture is smooth.
In a separate small bowl, combine juices and zest. Pour juice mixture into egg mixture and whisk to combine. Whisk in melted butter until fully incorporated. There should be no lumps.
Fill par-baked pie shell with pie filling mixture and bake in oven at 325ºF until set, approximately 1 hour. Majority of filling will be firm with center still jiggly (about the size of a silver dollar).
Chill and serve with crème fraîche. Pie can be chilled overnight.
*Grapefruit, meyer lemon, bergamot, blood orange and other citruses can be substituted, as desired.