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Coconut Pecan Filling

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  1. 1 2/3 cups sweetened shredded coconut
  2. 2/3 cup coarsely chopped pecans (2 1/2 ounces)
  3. 6 large egg yolks
  4. 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  5. 1/2 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
  6. 1 cup evaporated milk
  7. 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  8. Pinch of salt
  9. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  10. 3/4 cup heavy cream
  11. 2/3 cup coarsely chopped semisweet chocolate (4 ounces)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Spread the coconut and pecans on separate baking sheets and bake for about 7 minutes, or until golden and fragrant; let cool.
  2. In a large heavy saucepan, whisk the egg yolks with the granulated and dark brown sugars. Stir in the milk, cornstarch, salt and 1 cup of the coconut and cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until pudding-like, about 6 minutes. Strain the custard, pressing hard on the coconut. Discard the coconut and let the custard cool. Stir in the vanilla and refrigerate until cold.
  3. Whip the cream until it holds firm peaks. Fold the cream into the custard, then fold in the chocolate, pecans and the remaining coconut.


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