Mud pie could be argued to be one of the best summer desserts around. Typically made with a cookie crust, an ice cream center and whipped topping, it is cold and refreshing and light enough not to weigh you down. It also usually involves a lot of chocolate.
At the Gun Barrel, they take a broader approach and stretch the definition of mud pie to include many variations that rotate almost every night.
“When we decided to put it on the menu, I thought I might as well have fun with it,” says Gun Barrel Executive Chef Pete Lagerveld. “Traditional mud pie is good, but can get boring. I asked all of the purveyors we get ice cream from for their flavor lists.” Flavor lists in hand, Pete began plotting out Gun Barrel’s Mud Pie of the Day. It’s become such a popular dessert it’s on the menu year-round, a rarity for something so ice-cream-centric. But a rarity I applaud. I’d swear eternal devotion to Pete’s Mud Pies for their crusts—Oreo or a thick graham cracker—alone.
But they are not merely crusts. There is the ice cream. Yummy, yummy ice cream.
Pete and his Gun Barrel kitchen staff create two to three Mud Pie flavors from different ice creams every week. Crazier versions might have a caramel swirl or layer of chocolate on top.
Last week I went on a bit of a mud pie binge, trying three different flavors. Pete says he can go three months without repeating a flavor. Not that he always does though. There are obvious favorites. And losers. The Orange Creamsicle flavor didn’t go over so well.
The Peach mud pie with a graham cracker crust was light and refreshing. The Peanut Butter Fudge—Oreo crust with a layer of chocolate ganache on top—was decadent. And oh so delicious. I finished all of it, even using the last bits of Oreo crust to soak up the last bits of ice cream.
Huckleberry was, like the peach, light and refreshing. Pete switches this one up, sometimes making it with an Oreo crust, and other times making it with a graham cracker crust. The huckleberry with the Oreo crust was kind of the best of both worlds: light and refreshing fruit ice cream with a decadent crust.
Pete says it’s the Mud Pies—each 12-inch pie takes a gallon of ice cream to make—and his deep dish apple pie that are the most popular desserts in the summer.
I think it’s only right that I now try the apple pie.