Among the many books we overloaded on the previous time we went to the library was the book 1500 Best Bars, Cookies, Muffins, Cakes, and More by Esther Brody. The pictures are luscious, and definitely tempt you to give the recipes a whisk or two. We’ve been fasting the 10 days preceding our next Islamic holiday, and as we do when we fast, we felt like eating, feasting and eating some more come sundown. Well, feasting can’t be done unless you’ve got something nice baked, and while there was every chance that a new recipe would flop, the pictures in this book inspired confidence. (Famous last words?)
I tried the Southern Pecan Pie, and it turned out beautifully. While the suggested cooking time was 45-50 minutes, I actually baked it for 20 minutes longer than that, because it was a bit too jiggly when I tried to reach in and test it. I also reduced the pecans by 50% because we don’t like things overly nutty. For company, though, I would go with the suggested amount of pecans. The final adjustment to the recipe was washing the pie crust with a layer of ganache before pouring in the filling. Did this pie pass the taste test? Yes. It was mellow in texture and yet the flavor was quite, in a word, oomphish. Meaning, it packed a punch, and definitely in a good way. I totally can’t wait to try more recipes from this book, and it’s going onto my wish list. To try the recipe out as I did it, take a look on the flip side.
Single Crust Pie Pastry
1 1/2 cups AP flour
1/2 tsp salt
4 oz butter, cubed
2-6 TB cold water
- Mix together flour and salt.
- Cut in butter till cubes are about 1/4 inch and coated in flour. Rub butter into flour until mixture is rough like course meal.
- Sprinkle mixture with 1 TB cold water, and toss together with fork. Add more water a tablespoon at a time until a dough begins to form. Form dough into a flat disc, place into a plastic bag, and let chill for 1/2 hour before using.
2 oz chocolate
1 oz heavy whipping cream
- Place chocolate and cream in bowl, and microwave till chocolate has mostly melted, and cream is boiling, about 20 seconds. Remove from microwave intermittently to turn chocolate and to be sure it is not burning.
- Once sufficiently melted, stir mixture until cohesive. Set aside for later use.
Southern Pecan Pie Filling:
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup light corn syrup
2.5 oz butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 tsp salt
5 oz pecan halves*
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Beat eggs in mixing bowl. Add brown sugar, melted butter, vanilla, and salt, and whisk together till well blended.
- Roll out pastry on lightly floured pastry board and drape into 9 inch pie pan.
- Cover pastry with ganache, and chill about 10-15 minutes.
- Pour filling over pie crust, then bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour 5 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
- Allow to cool completely on wire rack, and serve with whipped cream or ice cream.
*double up to 10 ounces if you like your pecan pie nutty-licious.