The “Bischeri” Chocolate Pie

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Tsweet pie of the Pisa and Lucca provinces in Tuscany. First of all an explanation of the strange name for this Tuscan recipe. What are bischeri? Literally it means pricks. Originally bischeri were only the violin or guitar tuning keys. Eventually any protruding object became a bischero, and the prosaic Tuscan fantasy had of course to extend the meaning to male intimate parts. Well, actually that happened in the English language also. Considering the strong relationship between Florence and the British literates during the past 500 years, one might even think that one of the two influenced the other.
Back to baking! The chocolate pie is named so because the leftover dough is used to create decorations all around the pie, forming protruding beaks, resembling the keys of a violin. This is the chocolate version of the sweet chard pie, another delicacy to try.

Dough Ingredients: 100 grams of sugar, 100 grams of butter, 200 grams of flour, 3 eggs, 6 grams of baking powder, 10 grams of Strega liquor (use amaretto as a substitute), 10 grams of Maraschino liqueur (no substitute for it, it is really unique), lemon and orange zest.

Filling Ingredients: 100 grams of rice, 150 grams of dark chocolate in a bar, 20 grams of unsweetened powder cocoa, 100 grams of sugar, 7 eggs, 50 grams of candied orange peel, 50 grams of pine nuts, 50 grams of raisins, 10 grams of Strega liqueur and, 10 grams of Maraschino liqueur.

For the dough: Start about 10 hours prior to baking and prepare the dough combining the egg yolks with sugar, mixing well, then add the previously whipped egg whites. Add the melted butter, the lemon zest and both liqueurs (maraschino and strega), then mix with in about a third of the flour until you reach a rather fluid mix.
Cover with a kitchen towel and let rest at room temperature for 10 hours. After the time has passed, combine the remaining flour until you reach the necessary consistency to line the baking pan.

For the filling: You should prepare the filling at least ten hours prior to using it. Boil the rice, drain it and while it is still warm add the chopped chocolate, cocoa and sugar. Once the rice is cooled add all the flavorings, the maraschino and strega liqueurs, lemon and orange peel, pine nuts, raisins, and 2 eggs. Set to rest covered at room temperature. After ten hours lightly beat the remaining eggs on the side and add them to the rice until the mixture is quite soft.

Now fill the baking pan that you have previously lined with the dough stuffing using the filling you just prepared. Using some leftover dough form one inch wide stripes and create a net decoration over the filling. Pay attention to make each stripe longer than the pan. The exceeding portion of the stripe should be folded inwards as to form triangles. These will be your “bischeri“.
Heat the oven to 200 Celsius and bake until the dough has taken a hazel color.