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Thursday, November 4

Pecan Surprise

Ok, show of hands...who out there loves Pecan Pie?  C'mon, I know there at least a few of you.  Well, we LOVE it here.  Perhaps it's southern...perhaps it's holiday...either way, it's just plain GOOD!!  And today...it's the centerpiece of the blog!!

There are lots of recipes out there for pecan pie, and they are virtually all the same.  Pecans, corn syrup, eggs...those are the basis for almost any pecan pie you've ever had.  So, if I were to tell you that you can make a pecan pie completely different from anything you've ever had, would you want to learn how?  Well, today I offer you a regular Pecan Pie, then two distinct variations...Mystery Pecan Pie and Chocolate Pecan Pie!!

Hint...when making ANY pie that has a runny filling, it's always best to put the pie shell on a large baking sheet, set that on the oven rack, THEN fill the pie shell.  No spills!! 

SOUTHERN PECAN PIE

3 large eggs, slightly beaten
1 cup light brown sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup fresh pecans
1 9 inch pre-made deep-dish pie shell

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, combine first 5 ingredients until well blended.  Spread pecans all over the pie shell, then pour filling into shell.  Bake for 50-55 minutes.  Pecans will rise to the top and become golden brown.  Serve with whipped cream, if desired.  Makes 8 servings.

Easy, right?  Now it's time for the REAL FUN!!!

MYSTERY PECAN PIE

Topping:
3 large eggs
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla

Pie:
1 8oz package cream cheese, room temp
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 large egg
1 9 inch pre-made deep-dish pie shell
1 1/4 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine all topping ingredients thoroughly in a medium bowl.  Set aside.

In another medium bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, salt, vanilla, and egg until well blended.  Pour into pie shell.  Top with chopped pecans, then with topping mixture.  Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until pecans are golden brown.  Serve with whipped cream, if you wish.  Makes 8 servings.

CHOCOLATE PECAN PIE

1 9 inch pre-made deep-dish pie shell
2 cups pecan halves
3 large eggs, beaten
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup dark corn syrup
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons good-quality bourbon (I recommend Maker's Mark or Knob Creek)
3 ounces (about 1/3 cup) semi-sweet chocolate, chopped

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cover bottom of pie shell with pecans.  Set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and melted butter.  Add the corn syrup, sugar, bourbon, and chocolate, and blend well.  Pour into the pie shell over the pecans.

Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350, and continue baking for an additional 25-30 minutes, or until fully set (no jiggle).  Serve warm or cooled, with whipped cream, if desired.  Makes 8 servings.

Three similar pies...3 distinct flavors!!  Which will you make part of your holiday celebration?  ENJOY!!!


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