This is a great dessert for company or just for your family. You can make this a touch sweeter, if you like and you can also add a little more cocoa if you prefer a darker chocolate pie. Either way, this pie comes out so rich and creamy. It's sure to be a hit with your family. Enjoy!
1FOR THE PIE CRUST: Preheat oven to 475 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together flour and salt. Cut in shortening (you can use a pastry cutter or your fingers) until mixture resembles a coarse meal.
2Combine egg yolk and 3 tablespoons of ice water and mix well with fork. Add to flour mixture and mix to form a soft dough. Add another tablespoon of ice water, if needed.
3Roll out dough into a circle to fit a 10" pie plate. Press into pie plate and trim and crimp edges. Prick bottom and sides with fork. Place a small piece of aluminum foil in the bottom and add some beans for weight. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Remove from oven and place on cooling rack. Remove aluminum foil and beans. Set aside.
4FOR THE FILLING: In a heavy sauce pan, add flour, cocoa, cornstarch and salt. Mix with fork or whisk to remove any lumps.
5Pour in milk and Half and Half and cook on medium high heat until mixture is slightly thickened and very hot (not boiling), stirring constantly with whisk.
6Remove from heat and temper the egg yolks by adding about a tablespoon of the hot pudding mixture and immediately beating with fork. Add a second and then a third tablespoon full, beating with fork after each addition. Add to hot pudding mixture and cook over medium heat until thickened to desired consistency. Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla. Pour pudding mixture into baked pie shell and set aside.
7FOR THE MERINGUE: Beat egg whites at high speed until soft peaks begin to form. Mix in cream of tartar. Gradually add sugar while beating and add vanilla. Continue to beat until it forms soft peaks.
8Spoon meringue into the middle of the pie and gently spread to edges of pie crust with the back of a spoon. Bake at 400 degrees for 6 to 8 minutes or until meringue is golden brown.
9Allow pie to cool and set filling. Serve and enjoy!