Pecan Pie

Just like our festivities wouldn’t be complete without Christmas pudding or mince pies, here in Britain, across the pond, Christmas or Thanksgiving wouldn’t be complete without a pumpkin or pecan pie to grace the table.

Whilst pecan pie is a classic American dessert, it is thought that it is adapted from the humble treacle tart, made to suit the ingredients available, in this case, pecans (quite possibly one of the tastiest nuts, it’s up there with walnuts for me).

Classically enjoyed during the Thanksgiving period, deliciously rich & comforting, pecan pie is the perfect combination of sweet & salty. It’s also surprisingly easy to make. Whilst I have no ties to America or it’s traditions, I will happily take their desserts!

In my take on this classic, I’ve added a pinch of cinnamon & a dash of whiskey (yes, there’s booze in everything from mid-November onwards) to add another level of flavour & comfort. This is delicious served alongside a strong coffee or (even better) with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream.

PECAN PIE
(makes one 23cm pie)

Ingredients:

      For the pastry:

  • 250g plain flour
  • 125g butter, cubed
  • 3 tbsp icing sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 – 3 tbsp cold water

       For the filling:

  • 100g salted butter
  • 100g light soft brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 150ml golden syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp whiskey
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 200g pecans, chopped

For the decoration/topping:

  • 100-150g whole pecans
  • 1 tsp sea salt flakes

Method:

  • To make the pastry sift together the flours & icing sugar into a large bowl
  • Add in the cubed butter & rub together using your fingertips, rubbing the fat into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs
  • Make a well in the centre of the mixture & add the egg yolk before mixing through
  • Next, add in just enough of the water to bring the dough together, use your hands to press into a dough
  • Shape the dough into a flattened disc shape, then wrap & place in the fridge to chill for at least half an hour
  • Once the pastry has chilled, roll out to approximately 3mm thick & use it to line a 22cm tart tin, leave any excess to hang over the edge of the tin
  • Use a small scissors to trim the excess so that the overhang on the outside of the tin is only around 1-2cm around the edge
  • Keep the excess pastry trimmings, wrap & chill for later
  • Use a fork to pierce holes in the bottom of the pastry case before lining with baking parchment & filling baking beans
  • Blind bake the pastry case for 10 minutes at 180Β°C
  • Remove the baking beans & parchment, then return the case to the oven for a further 5 minutes, until it starts to turn golden
  • Remove the case from the oven, turn up the temperature to 190C & set aside to cool a little before trimming off any excess around the edges whilst it’s still a little warm
  • Next, make the filling by beating together the butter & sugar in a bowl
  • Add the eggs to the bowl, one at a time & beat into the creamed butter & sugar mixture
  • Add the golden syrup, vanilla, whiskey & cinnamon to the bowl & beat until smooth
  • Now add the chopped pecans & stir through
  • Pour the filling into the pastry case
  • Use the remaining whole pecans to arrange on top of the pie, starting from the outside, creating concentric circles of nuts
  • Bake the pie in the oven at 190C for 10 minutes before reducing the temperature to 180C & baking for a further 35 minutes
  • Once baked (the filling will puff up a bit in the oven but don’t worry, it will shrink back down when cooled) remove from the oven & sprinkle over the sea salt flakes
  • Leave the pie to cool completely in its tin before removing

2 Comments

  1. One of my former colleagues made a pecan pie as part of our GBBO sweepstake a couple of years back. It was the first time I’d tried it and, not ordinarily being a nut-eater, I was pleasantly surprised by how tasty it was! Thanks for sharing your recipe – duly bookmarked for a lockdown baking session πŸ™‚

    1. I do hope that my one lives up to your colleagues in that case πŸ™‚ I only tried it for the first time a few years ago but I do love anything with nuts so I’ve been hooked ever since! Happy baking & stay safe during lockdown πŸ’›

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