Mama Jo’s Pecan Pie Recipe

Wine pairing: La Crema, Pinot Noir, Monterey
ONE 9 IN [23 CM] PIE
Ingredients:
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup [200 g] sugar
  • 1 cup [240 ml] light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup [115 g] unsalted butter, browned, then cooled
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups [150 g] raw pecan halves
  • One 9 in [23 cm] pie shell, blind-baked (see Classic Pie Dough)

Preheat the oven to 400°F [205°C]. In a stand mixer with whisk attachment, beat the eggs and sugar on medium-high speed until light and slightly foamy. Add the corn syrup, browned butter, vanilla, lemon juice, and salt and mix on medium speed until completely combined. Layer the pecans in the prepared pie shell and pour the syrup mixture over the pecans. Pat the pecans down with a spoon, making sure they are all coated. Bake in the middle rack of the oven for 10 minutes, then lower the temperature to 325°F [165°C] and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until set in the middle and golden on top. Cool for 2 to 4 hours before serving at room temperature. 

Classic Pie Dough

TWO 9 IN [23 CM] PIECRUSTS 

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup [230 g] unsalted
  • butter, cut into tablespoon-size cubes
  • 3 cups [375 g] all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 6 to 8 Tbsp [90 to 120(ml] ice water
Preparation:

In a medium mixing bowl, add the butter and flour and place it in the freezer for 20 minutes. Flour a work surface well. Remove the mixture from the freezer and transfer it to a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Add the sugar and salt and pulse 8 to 12 times, until the butter is the size of frozen peas. 

As you continue pulsing, pour the ice water down the feed tube, a bit at a time, until the dough begins to form a ball. Turn the dough out onto the floured work surface and quickly roll it into a ball, being sure not to handle it too much with your hands. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes, or freeze, wrapped, for up to 6 months. If frozen, let thaw for 1 hour before continuing to the next step.

Unwrap the dough and cut it in half. On a well-floured surface, use a rolling pin to flatten and roll each piece into a circular disk, rolling from the center to the edge, turning and flouring the dough to make sure it doesn’t stick to the surface. Roll out the dough until it is at least 1 in [2.5 cm] wider than the pie dish. Place your rolling pin in the middle of the dough round, fold the dough in half over the pin, and transfer it to the pie dish, unfolding it to fit the dish. The dough should ease into the dish without stretching or pulling. Using a sharp paring knife or kitchen shears, trim the excess dough to the rim of the dish. Crimp the edge or press with a fork. Freeze for 15 to 20 minutes to chill before blind-baking. Cover the other rolled-out piece of dough and keep refrigerated until you’re ready to fill and bake the pie. 

To blind-bake the piecrust, preheat the oven to 400 F [205 C]. Remove the prepared pie shell from the freezer and line it with parchment paper, crumpling up the paper first to be sure that it easily shapes inside the crust. Fill the shell halfway with dried beans or pie weights. Bake until the edges are golden, 15 to 18 minutes. Remove the shell from the oven and carefully lift the parchment paper and weights out of the shell. Return the shell to the oven for 6 to 8 minutes to slightly brown the bottom for classic blind baking or for 14 to 15 minutes for a no-bake pie 

NOTE All-butter versus shortening crust: Although shortening has a higher melting point than butter, making it easier to handle and roll out, it lacks the flavor that butter boasts and often leaves a greasy film in your mouth. Freezing the flour and butter together before handling prevents it from melting and creates a velvety, flaky crust. Don’t skip the last step, in which you freeze the prepared shell briefly before blindbaking. This prevents the piecrust from shrinking and is the most important step.

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