Recipe courtesy of Graham Kerr

Mile High Pie

A specialty of Hotel Pontchartrain, New Orleans
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  • Level: Easy
  • Yield: 12 servings
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4 ounces shelled walnuts, minced

12 ounces Nice biscuits or any light, crisp sugared biscuit cookie, ground

8 ounces unsalted butter, softened and more to grease pan

1 pound split peas

14 egg whites

1/8 cup cold water

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/4 cups sugar

4 drops vanilla extract

1/2 gallon round container vanilla ice cream

1/2 gallon round container strawberry ice cream

16 ounces chocolate sauce


  1. Combine walnuts and biscuits. Add butter and mash thoroughly.
  2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 10-inch diameter springform pan and press biscuit crust into base and 2-inches up side. Cover this crust with waxed paper, cut to fit bottom exactly. Fill pan with split peas, up to height of sides and bake "blind" for 1 hour. Let cool while still filled.
  3. When crust is cooled, removed pea weights and paper. Meanwhile, whip egg whites with cold water and salt until peaked. Fold in sugar a little at a time. Add vanilla and keep cool.
  4. Unmold ice cream from containers and cut horizontally through middle of each to yield 4 discs total. Place disks in pie crust, alternating strawberry and vanilla flavors. Top with meringue, letting it fall all around the ice cream. Set in freezer for 2 hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Remove pie from freezer and place in oven to brown meringue tips. You may also use a blowtorch instead. Serve with chocolate sauce.