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Saturday, January 17, 2015

French Silk Pie in Honor of Great-Grandpa Buchsbaum

    As far as I know,  my Great-Grandpa "Buck" never made a French Silk Pie.  But, I can't imagine there ever being a time where a french silk pie doesn't remind me of him.  When everyone still lived in the Chicago area, Maw-Maw and Paw-Paw used to host Sunday dinners.  I was young, but still do have some memories of the house and the weekly ritual.  They had a strawberry shortcake toy in the closet upstairs that I liked to play with and a putting green in the backyard.  Yes, you read that right.  They had a putting green.  But that is unrelated to the pie.

    On Sundays we would all get together for a big family meal.  Great-Grandpa Buck would always stop by Baker's Square and pick up a pie.  Part of the fun was guessing what kind of pie it was.  My first guess was always french silk!  It isn't a pie you hear about all that often, but it is one that brings back good memories.  There are raw eggs in this recipe, so please be careful.  I grew up licking the bowl and eating cookie dough, so I don't tend to shy away from raw eggs (except while I was pregnant, you can never be too careful).  But, it is good to be aware.  Out of an abundance of caution (and as proof of my self-sacrificing ways) I made my pie the day before and licked the bowl.  It's a hard job, but somebody has to do it.  Believe me, what is in the bowl is good enough it is almost worth getting sick over!






French Silk Pie

Ingredients:

3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup softened butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 eggs 

  1. Pre-bake your pie crust according to recipe directions and cool.  
  2. Melt chocolate chips and then set aside to cool
  3. Place room temperature butter into stand mixer bowl.  Using the whisk attachment, incorporate the sugar and vanilla until smooth.
  4. Make sure the chocolate is cooled but not hardened, then add to the butter.  Beat until combined.
  5. Set your mixer to medium speed and get ready to add the eggs one at a time.  After each egg, let the mixer for for 4-5 minutes before you add the next egg.  So this whole process will take somewhere between 15 and 20 minutes.  By the end you will have a light and fluffy, smooth and creamy chocolaty pillow of goodness. 
  6. Pour the filling into the crust and refrigerate for at least two hours
You certainly want to store this pie in the refrigerator.  However, it has a better texture for eating if it has had a chance to sit out for 10-15 minutes.  It gives it a softer texture.  Yum!



And now, since this is a family blog... I thought I might share a little history about Great-Grandpa Buchsbaum.  Here is an excerpt from a paper I wrote in college:
He was named Emanuel because his mother felt he was "a gift from God" and his middle name was Valentine because he was born on February 14th.  He graduated from high school at the age of 16 and enrolled in the Armour Institute of Technology (now the Illinois Institute of Technology).  He wanted to be an engineer, but his father told him that he "looked like an architect" and proclaimed that is what he should be.  He graduated near the top of his class, but was only 20 and not yet old enough to hold a license to practice architecture.  Instead he became the assistant to Harold Zook, the famous architect who designed many award winning Chicago-area buildings.  Later, when he was old enough to practice by himself, he was named the First Architect of the Chicago park district and was involved in many projects including the band shell used for the World Fair of 1933.
Emanuel was "tall, dark and handsome with a nice mustache."  He was already doing well for himself as an architect when he met Peggy Smith. She was "a very pretty blonde, who looked like a movie star."  It was not easy for "Buck" and Peggy to get their relationship started.  After all, he was ten years older than she and Jewish.  Peggy was Roman Catholic and not much over 16 years old.  Peggy's brother Sid introduced Buck to his parents as his good friend hoping to make things easier on the couple.  Her family did not see the difference in religion as much of a problem.  The Buchsbaums, however, were not supportive of the relationship.  After dating for almost a year, they got married.  Peggy had graduated from high school and had just turned 17.  They went to the Justice of the Peace to be married.  Knowing that he would ask her age, and not wanting to lie, she put the number 18 inside her shoe so that she could honestly say she was "over 18."  The coupled liked to joke that they were married three times because they eloped and then had their marriage blessed by a Rabbi and a Catholic Priest.
Emmanuel build Peggy a house in Flossmoor, IL.  It was the first house in Flossmoor to have an outdoor swimming pool.  They had four children whom they raised in the Catholic faith.  Buck went to all of the major events at church so they could go as a family.  The family did not closely observe any Jewish traditions, but did attend at least one Passover Seder dinner.  Though it was abnormal for anyone in their Jewish community to marry outside the religion, the Buchsbaums accepted Peggy lovingly.  She was called the best wife in the family and their marriage was compared to the radio program "Abie's Irish Rose," a popular radio program of that era.  My Maw-Maw, Joanne, was the oldest of their children.  She was nicknamed "Jackie" (a name she still goes by) because her father so badly wanted a boy.
Great-Grandma, Barbara, Maw-Maw and Great-Grandpa Buchsbaum 

My Great-Grandpa buck had quite the life!  




19 comments:

  1. It was so nice to read the stories about my grandpa Bucks. He and my grandma were a true love story. I'm sure the pie was almost as sweet as they were. I'm glad your siblings will have this to read also.

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  2. This looks YUMMY! I've pinned to give it a try. Love the photo, what a treasure!
    Thanks so much for sharing at AMAZE ME MONDAY.
    Blessings,
    Cindy

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    1. Thank you, it is certainly worth a try. It was a lot of fun to relive some good childhood memories and brush up on some family history.

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  3. Matt was still talking about this today! He usually isn't that into sweets, so that is really sayings something.

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  4. Stopping by from Sunday's Best. I'm wishing I had a piece of this pie. I just ate and it has made me hungry all over again. I'm not a pie baker, but if I did bake pies this would be at the top of my list. Please linkup up more of these delicious recipes.

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    1. Thank you, it was a lot of fun to make. If you can blind bake a crust, you can make this pie!

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  5. What a great story and an amazing looking pie. I want to make this right now. I will be making this the next time I am crazy a dessert. Thank you for stopping by Sunday's Best. Please come back and join us again next week.

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    1. Thank you! My great-grandparents had a fun story. It was nice to have a chance to bring back some really good childhood memories!

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  6. Just put this into the fridge to chill :) It looks delicious and the texture is great.

    I was under the impression all eggs at the grocery store were pasteurized and you couldn't get sick from them, but reading up on it, is there is still a small chance of salmonella ? I will be sure to try this way ahead of time before anybody else does just to make sure.

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    1. I hope you love it! You can get pasteurized eggs, but not all are. I've never been one to shy away from licking the bowl, so it was a chance I was willing to take. Let me know how it goes!

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  7. What a beautiful memory and story and what a delicious looking pie. We have something similar in our family and it's my favorite holiday pie to eat. Have a great day! Stopping by from the linkup.

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    1. It's fun to have fun memories and traditions tied to delicious food. Now I am curious what pie is your families favorite!

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  8. Wonderful family story, and this pie looks amazing!

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    1. Thank you! I am still a sucker for French Silk. Maybe it is because of the fun memories (and also at least partly because chocolate!)

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  9. Great post Carlee, and I love your family story behind this french silk pie. Thanks for sharing it with us this week at the Throwback Thursday link party!

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    1. It is one of my favorite memories with my Great-Grandpa! Thanks!

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