Friday, December 2, 2011

Pecan Pie...

This year, for Thanksgiving, I took on... pie... well really, pie crust.  I have been married 25 years and I have never really made pie crust.  You see, according to the husb, his mom made the best pies.  Because I did not have the benefit of being schooled by his mother in pies, I avoided them or relied on a frozen, store bought crust.

This year, my lovely and talented BFF Mary, gave me a lesson in pie crust.  I really should have taken pictures of the event.  We had a fun afternoon the Wednesday before Thanksgiving that even included a little knitting while our crust chilled.

I do want to share the pie crust recipe (at the end of this post).  It is from Cooks Illustrated (which is like the cooking bible to Mary... and therefore me too).  Oh and I should mention, it contains cold vodka.  Vodka keeps the pie crust moist for an easy roll out.  It totally cooks out of the crust and finished pie eaters will never know your secret... unless you eat the pre-baked pie dough I suppose!

You will have 2 crusts using this recipe.  I used one crust for the Pecan Pie.  I borrowed a pecan pie recipe from Martha.  You can find it here.  This is the before picture.

 And here it is out of the oven.

I used the second crust for a quiche Thanksgiving morning.

One more very important note on the Pecan Pie.  Shortly before Thanksgiving, I saw a Thanksgiving Throwdown on the Food Network between Bobby Flay and Ree (aka The Pioneer Woman).  Ree made a Whiskey Maple Cream Sauce for her pie... so I copied.  It was AWE*SOME!  We drizzled it on the pie and my fav bread pudding.  I could have eaten the entire bowl with a spoon... alone.  Yummy!  This stuff would make cardboard taste good.  Here is that recipe, and thank you Ree!

Now, don't wait 25 years to give pie a try!

Foolproof Pie Dough  (Cooks Illustrated, November 2007)
Makes enough for one 9-inch double-crust pie

2 1/2 cups (12 1/2 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon table salt
2 tablespoons sugar
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1/2 cup cold vegetable shortening, cut into small bits
1/4 cup cold vodka
1/4 cup cold water

1. Process 1 1/2 cups flour, salt, and sugar in food processor until combined, about 2 one-second pulses. Add butter and shortening and process until homogeneous dough just starts to collect in uneven clumps, about 15 seconds (dough will resemble cottage cheese curds and there should be no uncoated flour). Scrape bowl with rubber spatula and redistribute dough evenly around processor blade. Add remaining cup flour and pulse until mixture is evenly distributed around bowl and mass of dough has been broken up, 4 to 6 quick pulses. Empty mixture into medium bowl.

2. Sprinkle vodka and water over mixture. With rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and sticks together. Divide dough into two even balls and flatten each into 4-inch disk. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.

1 comment:

Thimbleanna said...

I've always been meaning to try this pie crust recipe! I've been using Ina's, which is VERY similar, but this year it was a little tough (probably my fault -- plus we left it a little too thick.)

Thanks for sharing the recipes -- I'm glad you had wonderful success. I LOVE making pies!

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