Did you know that 12th July is National Pecan Pie Day in the states? No, neither did I but when I heard I couldn’t resist making one. Pecans aren’t cheap so you want to make sure you get it right and this simple recipe is a safe bet.
For the pastry
200g plain flour
50g caster sugar
1/8 tsp salt
4 tablespoons double cream (leftover cream can be whipped up and served with the finished pie)
For the filling
200g soft light brown sugar
150ml golden syrup
50g margarine or butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp plain flour
To make the pastry
- Combine the flour, sugar and salt in a food processor. Cut the margarine into squares and add to the dry ingredients and mix well. If you don’t have a food processor you could use an electric whisk.
- The mixture should now resemble breadcrumbs. Add the cream and mix until the dough comes together and can be formed into a ball. If the dough is too dry you can add an extra tablespoon of cream.
- Wrap the dough in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes (no longer, or it will become too firm).
- Lightly flour your work surface and your rolling pin and roll out a circle. My tart tin is 9 inches so I roll out the pastry to approx 11 inches.
- Press the pastry gently across the side of the tin and trim any excess, leaving approx ½ inch spare around the edges to account for shrinkage.
- Lightly prick the bottom and sides with a fork, put back in the fridge for another 30 minutes.
- While waiting for the pastry you can either put your feet up and have a cup of tea or start making the filling following the instructions below.
- The next step is to blind bake the pastry. Preheat the oven to 220°C and leave a baking sheet in the oven to heat up. We will put the pie tin on the hot baking sheet and this will help the pastry to cook evenly and stop the pie from getting a dreaded soggy bottom.
- Line the tart pastry with baking paper or foil. Fill the pastry with baking beans to keep the pastry from puffing up and shrinking.
- Put the pie in the oven, after 15 minutes remove from the oven and carefully remove the pie weights and foil. Put it back in the oven and back the pastry case for a further 5 minutes or until light golden brown.
- Reduce oven temperature to 170 °C.
To make the filling
- Put approx. 150g of the pecans to one side, you will need these for decoration so pick out the nicest looking, whole pecans. If you have any broken ones they can go in the filling.
- Melt the margarine and leave to one side. In a separate bowl whisk the eggs. Then add the sugar, vanilla, flour, syrup and melted margarine and whisk again. Finally stir in 250g pecans.
- Pour the mix into the pastry case and then decorate with the remaining pecans on the top. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, if the pie starts to look a bit brown you can cover with tin foil to avoid burning.
- When ready, remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack.
Best served warm with whipped cream; you should hopefully have some cream leftover since we didn’t use that much in the pastry.