Young Coconut Cream Pie

Young Coconut Cream Pie
Young coconuts and coconut water lend a fresh flavor to a creamy chilled classic.Courtesy Barbara Hansen

The filling for this pie is made with young, tender coconuts. Use a cleaver to cut off the top of each coconut; drain, reserving water, and scoop out the meat.

Young Coconut Cream Pie
The filling for this sumptuous pie is made with young, tender coconuts, while a mile-high meringue graces the top.
Yield: serves 8

Ingredients

  • 1 12 cups flour
  • 34 tsp. kosher salt
  • 10 tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into 1/2'' cubes and chilled
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 6 tbsp. cornstarch
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 1 cup chopped young coconut meat, plus 3/4 cup fresh coconut water from inside coconuts
  • 34 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Whisk together flour and 14 tsp. salt in a bowl. Rub 8 tbsp. butter into flour until pea-size crumbs form. Add 4–5 tbsp. ice water; stir with a fork until a dough begins to form. Briefly knead dough; flatten into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill for 1 hour.
  2. Heat oven to 425°. Roll dough into a 12'' circle about 18'' thick. Place in bottom of a 9'' pie plate; trim edges to fit. Freeze for 20 minutes. Prick pastry with fork; line with parchment. Fill pie with dried beans; bake until set, 15–20 minutes. Remove paper and beans; bake until golden, 8–10 minutes. Let cool. Reduce oven to 350°.
  3. Meanwhile, whisk together remaining salt, 34 cup sugar, and cornstarch in a 4-qt. nonreactive saucepan along with yolks, coconut meat and water, and coconut milk. Bring to a boil; cook, stirring, until thickened, 1–2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in remaining butter and vanilla. Pour filling into pie shell; set aside.
  4. In a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, whisk remaining sugar and whites until a thermometer inserted into mixture reads 120°. Remove from heat; whisk whites to stiff peaks. Spread meringue over pie. Bake until golden brown, 12–15 minutes. Let cool.