A Chocolate Pie Fit for a President

Times Staff Writer

Dear SOS: We recently had dinner at the Forge Restaurant in Miami Beach, where they served a very fine dessert called blacksmith pie. It is an extremely rich chocolate pie. Do you suppose you could get the chef to part with his recipe?


Dear David: The pie was created exclusively for the Forge Restaurant by Marina Polvay, president of a food consulting and recipe development firm in Miami Shores. "The blacksmith pie became an instant success and was served at the two last presidential inaugurals in Washington and also at the Frank Sinatra pre-gala dinner at the inauguration (of President Reagan)," Polvay said.


1 1/4 cups crushed graham crackers

1 1/4 cups crushed chocolate fudge cookies

1/2 cup melted butter

Vanilla Pudding

12 ounces semisweet chocolate

3 1/2 cups whipping cream

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

2 egg whites

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Chocolate curls and shavings

Mix graham cracker and cookie crumbs with butter and press into 10-inch pie plate. Chill 1 hour. Prepare Vanilla Pudding. Melt chocolate and mix with 1 cup pudding. Whip cream with 1 cup powdered sugar until stiff. Fold 2/3 cup whipped cream into chocolate-pudding mixture. Spread mixture over crumb crust and refrigerate.

Fold 1 cup whipped cream into remaining Vanilla Pudding. Beat egg whites until foamy. Add remaining 1/2 cup powdered sugar and vanilla and beat until stiff. Fold into Vanilla Pudding mixture thoroughly and spread over chocolate mixture. Chill 1 hour. Frost pie with whipped cream. Decorate with chocolate curls and shavings and additional whipped cream. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

Vanilla Pudding

1/4 cup cornstarch

3 tablespoons Vanilla Sugar

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 cups half and half

1 envelope unflavored gelatin

1/3 cup water

2 egg yolks

1 egg

Combine cornstarch, Vanilla Sugar and salt in saucepan. Gradually add half and half, stirring until smooth. Cook and stir over low heat, stirring constantly until thickened.

Combine gelatin and water in small saucepan and cook over low heat until melted and clear. Add to pudding. Set aside. Beat egg yolks and whole egg and fold into pudding. Set aside to cool, then chill.

Vanilla Sugar

1 to 2 whole vanilla beans

2 to 3 cups powdered or granulated sugar

Place vanilla beans with sugar in jar with tight-fitting lid. Store 3 days.

Dear SOS: I lost my recipe for clam casserole. The ingredients were canned clams, eggs, milk and 24 soda crackers. Can you help?


Dear Louise: Victory. I found the recipe in the recesses of our musty-dusty files.


2 cups milk

24 soda crackers, crushed

1 small onion, minced

1 small green pepper, minced

1/4 cup butter or margarine

2 (7-ounce) cans minced clams

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Salt, pepper

4 eggs, well beaten

Pour milk over crackers and let stand until milk is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Cook onion and green pepper in butter until tender, but not browned. Add to cracker mixture.

Add clams with liquid, Worcestershire, salt and pepper to taste and eggs and mix well. Pour into greased 2-quart casserole and bake at 350 degrees 50 minutes or until set. Makes 6 servings.

Dear SOS: I would like a copy of your carrot cake published about five or six years ago. I lost my copy. It had a cream cheese frosting, grated carrots and pineapple.


Dear Odessa: Carrot cakes? A voice from the past. Still a great cake. How about the recipe from the J. Paul Getty Museum, which contains the ingredients you mentioned?



1 1/2 cups corn oil

2 cups sugar

3 eggs

2 cups flour

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups grated carrots

1 cup chopped walnuts

1/2 cup crushed pineapple, drained

Cream Cheese Frosting

Combine oil, sugar, eggs, flour, cinnamon, baking soda, vanilla, salt, carrots, walnuts and pineapple in large bowl. Mix until blended. Pour into greased 13x9-inch pan and bake at 350 degrees 1 hour. Frost with Cream Cheese Frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese

1 1/4 cups powdered sugar

1/2 cup butter or margarine

1/8 cup crushed pineapple

1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Mix cream cheese, powdered sugar and margarine until fluffy. Add pineapple and walnuts. Mix well.

Dear SOS: My favorite restaurant is Benihana's in Los Angeles. Last year you gave the recipe for their ginger sauce, but not for their mustard sauce, which I just love. Do you have that recipe?


Dear Beth: Thanks for asking. The sauce is wonderful on steaks, roasts and such.



1/4 cup dry mustard

1/4 cup water

2 tablespoons whipping cream

1/2 cup soy sauce

1 tablespoon crushed sesame seeds

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

Mix mustard and water in small mixing bowl until mixture becomes paste. Stir in cream and soy sauce. Add crushed sesame seeds and lemon peel. Place in blender container and blend at high speed 3 seconds. Makes 1 cup.

Dear SOS: Please help. I have tried every beef teriyaki recipe under the sun and still cannot get the excellent flavor in the sauce that one obtains from fine restaurants. Could you please print your best recipe?


Dear Mona: This recipe was printed in our "The Los Angeles Times California Cookbook" (Abrams: $25, hardcover; New American Library: $9.95, paperback), which contains the best recipes of The Times' Food Section throughout the last 20 years.


2 large flank steaks

1 cup dry white wine

1/2 cup soy sauce

1 1/2 tablespoons minced onion

1/4 teaspoon minced garlic

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons brown sugar or 2 tablespoons honey

1 (10 1/2-ounce) can condensed beef broth

1 (1-inch) piece peeled ginger root, crushed

Slice steaks diagonally across grain to 1x1/4-inch strips and place in large bowl. Mix wine, soy sauce, onion, garlic, lemon juice, brown sugar, broth and ginger root.

Pour over meat and let marinate 1 hour, turning meat 3 or 4 times. Thread meat on skewers and grill over coals until meat reaches desired degree of doneness. Makes 30 to 40 servings.

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