Recipe Testing NEVER Ends

IMG_20151116_213442Each year, around December, I begin making test pies for Christmas and the American Pie Council‘s National Pie Championship. Sometimes they are good, and sometimes, they are complete disasters. For whatever reason, I love using cream cheese, coffee, chocolate, and caramel. This year, at my husband’s request, I’ve made him a pie using his favorite ingredient…cherries. And, if the response from my friends (and the empty pie plate) is any indication, it must be good!

Dark Chocolate Espresso Mousse/Cream with Amaretto Cherries



3 c. Oreo cookie crumbs

3 TBSP melted butter


8 oz. cream cheese-softened

1/2 c. granulated sugar

1 pkt instant coffee

8 oz. dark chocolate

2 TBSP heavy cream

8 oz. Cool Whip


12 oz. Dole Sweet Dark Cherries

3 TBSP Amaretto

1 c. granulated sugar

1/4 c. cornstarch

Whipped Cream

16 oz. heavy whipping cream

1 1/2 c. powdered sugar

Chocolate Shavings for garnish


In a large bowl, combine cookie crumbs and melted butter.  Press into a 10″ deep pie plate.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth.  Add sugar and instant coffee.  Continue mixing until smooth.  In a microwave safe bowl, melt chocolate with 2 TBSP whipping cream in 30 second intervals.  Add melted chocolate to cream cheese mixture and beat until smooth and completely incorporated.  Fold in Cool Whip.

Spoon filling into prepared crust and chill in refrigerator while cherries cook.

In a small saucepan, combine cherries, sugar, cornstarch, and Amaretto. Bring to a boil stirring occasionally.  Cook until thick.  Remove from heat and chill to thicken.

When chilled, spoon cherries (NOT sauce) onto center of pie.  Return to the refrigerator to chill.

In a large mixing bowl, beat whipping cream and powdered sugar until stiff.  Pipe large rosettes around edge of pie between crust and cherries.

Spoon some of the cherry liquid over the chilled cherries. Garnish with chocolate curls.

Serve chilled.

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