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One of my surprise favorite recipes from last year was a traditional Hawaiian sweet known as Haupia. This simple dessert is made primarily of coconut milk and milk. It's clean and uncluttered, the sort of dish that would make this avowed former anti-coconut-ist reconsider.
The early February doldrums in the Northeast have me longing for sunshine and warmer weather and after the success of last year's haupia recipe, I decided to look into other luau dessert fare and discovered that there is another version of haupia. A chocolate haupia...that's served up in pie form. Clearly this called for some experimentation.
A bit of research turned up Ted's Bakery on O'ahu's North Shore as the originator of the chocolate haupia cream pie, which according to their site, consists of "a layer of rich, smooth dark chocolate custard cream, filled with another layer of haupia topped with whipped topping." I decided to buck tradition (or perhaps build on it) by forgoing any layering and whisking 72% cacao dark chocolate directly into the haupia then pouring it into a chocolate graham cracker crust. As for the whipped topping, it's totally up to you if you want to add it, I just added more cookie crumbs to the top. There were no complaints or leftovers.
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Got a favorite classic American dessert recipe you'd like to see featured here? Email us with the subject: "American Classics."