This White Chocolate Velvet Pie is so silky-smooth, creamy and utterly white chocolaty! Perfect for any white chocolate lover.
So, confession: this isn’t my recipe.
It’s actually my friend Joan’s recipe, from her site, Chocolate, Chocolate & More.
Joan was a dear friend of mine in real life and in this crazy big, crazy weird world of blogging. She lit up every room she walked into. I know that’s totally cliche and like, everyone says that about their friend/mom/dog, but Joan truly was a beaming light with an effervescence about her that was so intoxicating and charming.
She had an infectious Southern accent and attitude about her that was so appealing to Miss California over here. She was as sweet as sugar and would make you feel your very best whenever you were around her, but if you done goofed, she’d be the first to call you out on it but from more of a, “I know you did this – what were you thinking?” good-natured place rather than a judgey place.
She was quick-witted, sharp-tongued and laser-focused on her blog, her business, her brand, and most importantly, her three kids, whom she just adored. Every time I was around her, she’d beam whenever she spoke of them, so proud to be their mom and champion in life.
She was a mogul when it came to her business. She had over 1 million Facebook fans and counting and was never stingy or shy about her practices, her successes, her failures… hell, she was like, the least shy person in the world. If you asked her a straight-forward question about anything: personal life, business tactics, you name it – she’d give you a no-bullshit answer. She was real, she was tough, but that’s why her business was such a screaming success – because people connected with that authenticity of the person behind the blog. People felt like they knew Joan, even if they’d only ever seen her Facebook page avatar. She had the uncanny ability to make anyone feel welcome, even if she barely knew your name.
She was 49 when she died suddenly last year of a heart attack, and would have celebrated her 50th birthday this Saturday, September 24.
I’ve kept this inside for so long – almost a year now, in October – and finally I feel like I can say it. I was mad at her before and when she died. Very mad, and confused, and saddened. And looking back now, it was so trivial, but at the time, it really upset me.
What happened was, we had attended the IFBC Food Conference in Seattle last September. She knew I was coming as we’d talked about it and she and I had even planned to do a chocolate-tasting tour through Seattle with some other blogger friends before one of the sessions started. I was so excited to see her, as I hadn’t seen her since that April.
The next night after our chocolate tour, a blogger asked me if I was going to a brand dinner that night – one Joan had orchestrated. Confused, I said no – I wasn’t invited. The blogger also looked confused and a little awkward, like oh shit, what did I just say? And I felt the same way, like oh shit, why was I not invited to this?
Turns out, almost every blogger Joan was friends with went to this dinner… except me. I was not invited. I was not invited. I repeated that phrase throughout my head the entire night as I ate dinner alone. At first, I was fuming mad – what the hell had I done to her? And then I was confused – what had happened to cause her to overlook me? I mean, I’m not exactly the shy imp in the corner – I’m easily memorable – right? And then annoyed – fine, they can all have their fun without me. It’s whatever. Seeing the photos of all my blogger friends laughing and smiling and having a helluva time at dinner – at a dinner Joan didn’t invite me to – made it even worse.
Later that night, I saw Joan and some blogger friends (ones who actually were invited to dinner, I bitterly thought to myself) in the hotel lobby. They were laughing and drinking wine and called me over. I protested and said I wanted to go to bed – it was maybe 8 or 9pm. Joan chuckled and said, “come hang out with us!” But I was too angry at her to want to hang out. Oh, now you want to hang out with me?, I thought. I went to my room that night and cried.
Joan would die not a month later.
I remember Dorothy texting me and asking me if I knew what had happened to Joan. I said I didn’t, and when she told me, I was shocked. The air literally left my lungs and I was stunned into silence. I got that weird ball of emotions stuck in the back of my throat – the one that feels like you’re regurgitating a ball of yarn. I couldn’t believe it. She was literally here one day and gone the next. How could this happen?
Unbeknownst to me, other bloggers were planning on posting a recipe dedicated to #ChocolateForJoan the week after she died. I wasn’t invited until about a day before it was set to post. I didn’t have time to post that next day.
I feverishly rushed to the store to get ingredients for my post while everyone else shared their stories of Joan and each other’s recipes on their blogs. I was making my recipe when people were mourning together. I felt so alone while everyone found solace in each other during this confusing time. Especially since I was still dealing with unresolved feelings from a month prior, feelings, I felt, that no one would understand.
My mom had told me to reach out to Joan – “maybe it was an oversight? Or maybe she only could invite a number of people? Or maybe she did forget – we’re human,” she said. “Reach out to her and let her know that it hurt your feelings and to see if you two are okay.”
I never sent that email, because Joan died before I could compose my thoughts and write it.
Were we okay? Was the last memory she had of me the one where I stormed off to my room at the hotel? Were the last feelings she felt when she thought of me tension and annoyance?
The thoughts troubled me for a long time. They only recently faded away when I became so preoccupied with my own life: writing my cookbook in 2 months, managing my blog, becoming a “new mom” to a new dog and a mom to Mannie, everything else. Until recently, when a blogger mentioned we all make one of Joan’s recipes for a post this week in tribute of her birthday. Until I realized it’s been almost a year since Joan died, almost a year since I felt these same feelings of shame, confusion, misunderstanding, disappointment… in myself. It’s a pretty big pill to swallow, but one I have to. One I have to because life goes on and I cannot remain stuck in the past, and one I have to because Joan would want me to.
It only made me realize now that she would want me to move on. Joan didn’t dwell, and she didn’t do dwelling with others. She was a, “fuck that and let’s go eat chocolate” kinda person. And now I am going to pull myself up and swallow that pill and know that for whatever reason, things happened. I don’t know why she didn’t invite me to that dinner and I don’t care. What she did know – because I told her many times before – was that I found her to be an amazing, resilient, compassionate, whip-smart inspiration of a woman and someone I looked up to. And I know now that if I had written that email to her, she would have apologized and suggested we move on because she loved me and always would and everything would be right again.
So Joan, I am so sorry. I’m sorry I was mad at you, I’m sorry I doubted our friendship for one second. I’m sorry that I chose to pout and cry alone rather than accept your invite to hang out. I’m sorry I allowed there to be a thick fog of tension in our friendship, and I’m sorry I didn’t say sorry sooner.
So here we are, present day. I know Joan would be thrilled that her friends were making her recipes. And I was thrilled to make it. After all, this recipe came from a dessert genius and a woman who knew her chocolate, so anything less than perfect wouldn’t have made the cut.
This White Chocolate Velvet Pie is now one of my favorites; One, because I love white chocolate-anything, and two, because it’s so easy to make, and it makes me happy knowing that Joan concocted it in her crazy-wonderful brain. Also, it’s no-bake, which is always a winner in my book.
Joan, thanks for the memories, recipes, and laughter. You’re sorely missed.
*recipe from Chocolate, Chocolate & More
White Chocolate Velvet Pie
- 1 prepared Oreo crust
- 1½ cups white chocolate chips
- 1 (8 oz pkg) cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup plus 1/3 cup heavy cream
- In a large microwaveable bowl, melt the white chocolate chips and the 1/3 cup of heavy cream on HIGH power for about 25 seconds. Stir, then heat again for about 10 seconds. Stir until melted and smooth. Cool slightly.
- Add the cream cheese and vanilla to the melted and cooled white chocolate mixture and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed for about 1-2 minutes or until fluffy and incorporated. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the remaining 1 cup of heavy cream with the whisk attachment on HIGH speed for about 4-6 minutes or until stiff peaks form. Fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture until incorporated.
- Spread the pie filling into the prepared pie crust and refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours or until set. Just before serving, cut into wedges and garnish with fresh fruit, if desired.
Creamy, ultra silky & smooth and just loaded with chocolaty goodness, this is one pie recipe you don’t want to skip out on!
Have a super sweet day!
Anita at Hungry Couple says
Awe, I didn’t know that happened and I’m so sorry you’ve carried it with you and didn’t have the time for the two of you to get it resolved. Be at peace now because I’m sure she is. Also, send me this pie! 🙂
Thank you, Anita! xoxo!
Kayle (The Cooking Actress) says
annnnd now I’m crying 🙁 I can’t believ Joan has been gone almost a year. And I had no idea that you were struggling with this–but I think you’re completely right. She would totally have been like “Girl it’s done and over with, it doesn’t matter and I love you!” <3 Because that's how awesome she was. And she knew, like I know, how awesome YOU are too!
Thank you, Kayle! You are too kind. And you’re right, she totally would have made amends with me and made me feel better. I can feel it even though she can’t say it. <3
Becca Heflin says
Oh my crap, Haley… I wish you had placed a big KLEENEX WARNING at the top of this post. I’m a sopping mess of tears and I feel horrible that you’ve carried the pain of this around for almost a year. I hope that making a recipe of Joan’s and writing this post was cathartic for you, and I hope you will always know that Joan adored you… and I do, too. <3
Becca, thank you so much for your sweet words. I appreciate it and you! So happy to have this off my chest. Writing it and making Joan’s original recipe was so cathartic and healing. Much love to you! xoxo.
Elizabeth @ Confessions of a Baking Queen says
I always admire your honest and candid posts. So heartwarming. And such a fabulous chocolate pie.
Thank you, babe! You are amazing.
Today is National White Chocolate day, so this is more appropriate than anything else in my mind!
Thanks Jessie! xoxo!
This is such a gorgeous pie! I love the contrast between the black crust and white filling!
Julianne @ Beyond Frosting says
It takes a lot of courage to share your story and I remember how upset you were. Time heals, and I think you are 100% right. Joan would not want you to dwell on those feelings. I am so glad we got to spend some time together this weekend. Hugs.
Thank you so much for your kind words, Julianne. I appreciate it and am so glad we got to spend time together!
Oh, sweet girl. I’m so sorry you were hurting over all of this on your own. You’re right, she would have wanted you to say something, but she also would’ve hugged your neck later and understood that you weren’t ready to at the time. Your words today are beautiful and I have tears on my face as I write this. Joan was truly amazing and she touched so many of our lives.
Nancy | The Bitter Side of Sweet says
I think the fastest way to move on from something is talking about it. I admire you for talking about this!
Thanks so much for your kind words, Nancy! xoxo!
Alicia M says
Awww that made me cry and I’m sorry for the loss of your friend. Friendships can cause hurt feelings sometimes and that sucks 🙁 I didn’t know Joan but have read a lot about her in the last year. It’s sad she was taken so young. Thank you for posting this recipe, I think I’ll make it for Christmas Day.
Thanks so much, Alicia, for your kind words. Appreciate them!
Jules B. says
I was a huge fan on Joan’s. I’m a blogger, but I don’t attend conferences or market on my blog, so I’ve never truly felt like a real blogger. My blogger friends always tell me I’m a real blogger, and I do believe them. It’s just how I feel. Well, when I think of real bloggers, Joan is one that comes to mind quickly. She was the real deal and so genuine. Her death was a shock. I shared so many of her recipes after. I interacted with her a bit over the years, and you’re so right, she always made me feel good, despite the silly questions I would be asking, trying to navigate her recipes properly. I’m sorry, that you had such a period of hurt, and weren’t able to talk it through with her. I’m certain she’d want you to feel happy and not be hard on yourself. I’m grateful to you for sharing this recipe. I love your blog. Now, you get the unfortunate pleasure (term pleasure used loosely), of me asking you a silly question, trying to navigate Joan’s recipe through you…. It’s one I’ve wanted to ask a million times, but have never felt brave enough to make a fool of myself in front of a blogger I admire… I cannot use heavy cream. I’ve never seen a nondairy heavy cream. Is there something I could substitute it with? Would almond milk or Lactaid work? Probably not thick enough? I’ve often considered experimenting with a plain Coffeemate, but figured it’d alter the recipes. I’m allergic to coconut, so those alternatives are out. I’m guess I’ll just need to keep skipping recipes with heavy cream. I wanted to thank you for being so open and honest, in this post. I’m certain it wasn’t the easiest post to write, but you made it into a beautiful post.
Sharon C Clark says
this is one delicious pie i have made this pie several times and i always make at least2or3 because some body always want to take one home thats how good this pie is
Do you have a use a stand mixer or would a hand mixer be ok? I’m a bachelor starting out in this baking run (while on lockdown ?) and I want to try this recipe but only have a hand mixer currently. (Stand mixer is a bit out of my price point currently.) ?
Any recommendation on which to use would be great. Thank you!!
Hi Diricus, a hand mixer is absolutely okay!
Thank you very much!! Going to make tonight…fingers crossed!!! Wish
Me luck!! ?