Chocolate Maple Walnut Pie

This pie is a riff on a Bacon-Maple Walnut pie I saw in a magazine. I know bacon is awesome and it makes everything better, so we've been told. But I decided to forego the pork and instead replace it with chocolate. Oh yeah!

Chocolate Maple Walnut Pie
Inspired by A La Mode by Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough
Makes one 9" pie

Prepare your favorite pie crust. Roll out and set in a 9" pie pan. Trim edges leaving a 1/2" overhang. Fold under and press with a fork tine or crimp, flute as desired. Place in refrigerator while you prepare filling.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place oven rack in center of oven.

Spread evenly in a baking pan and toast until fragrant, about 8-10 minutes:
2 cups chopped walnuts
Set aside.

Prepare the filling:
In a small saucepan, melt:
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Turn off heat and add, stirring to completely melt:
3 oz dark chocolate, chopped with a serrated knife
Set aside to cool.

In a large mixing bowl, beat with an electric mixer at medium speed until smooth and uniform, even a little foamy on top:
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup maple syrup, preferably Grade A Dark Amber or Grade B (320g)
1/2 cup granulated white sugar (100g)
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar (100g)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Add melted butter/chocolate mixture and beat until well mixed.

Stir in toasted chopped walnuts.

Pour filling into prepared pie crust. Bake at 350°F until puffed and brown and the filling in the center jiggles only slightly when pie is tapped, about 55 minutes. Cool the pie on a wire rack for at least 1 1/2 hours or to room temperature before slicing and serving. Store in refrigerator tightly sealed with plastic wrap for up to 2 days.

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