Saturday, January 26, 2008

Diving Back into Sweets with a Pecan Tart

For the first few weeks after the holidays I avoided sugar, a rarity indeed for me. It’s no secret that I have a sweet tooth and seldom is it satiated, however this month I found myself saying more than once:

“I don’t feel like anything sweet”

followed promptly by:

“It’s OK, sit down. No, I am not ill, I feel just fine”

as Danny would inevitably leap up, concerned that I must be very sick indeed!

But that didn’t last for long, and soon I was back battling my usual sugar cravings and whipped up this sugary treat. Not just one, but three different sweeteners - sugar, corn syrup and molasses - make this decadent tart a plunge back into the wonderful world of desserts!

A touch of rum adds an extra punch of flavor to this ever-popular classic. The recipe is adapted from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook.

Pecan Pie

Pate Brisée or pie pastry for one pie shell

5 large eggs

1 ¼ cups packed light-brown sugar

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1/3 cup light corn syrup

1/3 cup molasses

1 tablespoon bourbon or dark rum

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

¼ teaspoon salt

1 2/3 cups pecans, coarsely chopped, plus 1/3 cup whole pecan halves

Set a 9-inch cake ring on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper; set aside. If you don’t have a cake ring, you can use a 9-inch springform pan.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out pie dough into a 13 inch round. Fit dough into cake ring or springform pan, gently pressing into the edges and up 1 ½ inches of the sides. Freeze until firm, then trim dough flush with the top edge of ring. Chill until firm.

Preheat oven to 375F.

Line chilled pie shell with parchment paper, leaving a 1-inch overhang. Fill with pie weights (I use dried beans). Bake until the edges begin to turn golden, about 15 minutes. Remove parchment and beans and leave to cool.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, butter, corn syrup, molasses, rum, vanilla and salt. Stir in the chopped pecans. Pour filling into the cooled pie shell and arrange pecan halves on the top.

Reduce oven to 350F. Bake until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 40-45 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

Tart can be kept at room temperature, loosely covered with foil, for up to four days.


Peter M said...

So easy and so yummy. Beyond th cost of peacans, the tart is a cinch!

Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

I would dive head first and blindfolded into this tasty treat Aimee. Your pies always look so mouthwatering!!!This quintessential pie is the best and the sweetest way to break my new years resolutions.

David Hall said...

Well done on avoiding sugar for a while but the way I look at it is, a treat never harms if it is now and again, and you can always run it off. Well, if not pregnant of course! Great recipe, I adore pecan pie.


test it comm said...

That looks amazing! I have been wanting to try a pecan pie for a while now. Bookmarked.

Michelle said...

That looks divine! Absolutely one of my favourites.
As for avoiding sugar - it's a lost cause with me. I'm fully addicted!

JEP said...

Years ago I lived in Texas with a pecan tree in my back sure-fire excuse to make pecan pies:)

Anonymous said...

I am going to try this very soon.... Sugar and I are on a first name basis. I shudder to think of how much peanut butter fudge I consumed right after Alex was born. It sure was fun though :)

Aimée said...

Hi Peter- Yes, it's very simple and is actually my first pecan pie ever. Probably the price of pecans had to do with that!

Hi Valli- I don't want to be the reason for breaking resolutions....but this isn't a bad way at all!

Hi David- Oh, I run all right, I run after my 2 year old-pregnant or not.

Hi Kevin- For some reason it seems rather seasonal. Most of the fruit now is not so pretty, so why not make a nut tart? Enjoy!

Hi Michelle- It's hard to beat, I admit. Wish we could share it over a cup of coffee.

Hi jep- Sounds divine! You must have some great recipes.

Hi Michelle- Mmm, fudge! So you are a fellow sugar addict. Yay!

winedeb said...

Pecan Pie - I remember in the movie "When Harry Met Sally" which is one of my all time favorites, a scene in which Harry told Sally that they would talk "funny" for the rest of the day - they would say "Pecan Pie" in a strange way. OK, it is hard to explain it in writing and now all of you think I am crazy..well.
Your pie looks wonderful Aimee and the yum!
New baby should be arriving soon???

Nora B. said...

I'm glad that your sweet tooth is back. :-) Your pecan pie looks perfect, not just picture perfect, but also perfect for sinking one's teeth into...yummm!

Sandy said...

Ah, pecan pie was my absolute favorite dessert as a child. There is nothing that could satisfy a sweet craving more than this, in my opinion.
I am practically drooling for a piece, it looks divine!

Aimée said...

Hi Deb- Baby has just a few weeks left(6)! We're counting down the days.

Hi Nora- Thanks, yes it felt a little odd not to be craving sugar!

Hi Sandy- Funny, I don't remember ever having it as a kid. Those must be some special memories of yours!

Amanda at Little Foodies said...

Yes please. I'd like a HUGE slice. Adding rum... my children are going to have drink issues... we narrowly avoided family therapy after the figgy fruit roll... ;)

Look after yourself and start putting your feet up PLEASE!

Shayne said...

I have been thinking about trying this with agave nectar or brown rice syrup for the corn syrup.

Cookie baker Lynn said...

Serious yumminess!

Anonymous said...

YUM :)


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