While my mom, my sister and I went to church for Easter mass, D (my sister's soon-to-be husband) prepared our dessert for dinner. He made pastry dough from scratch and then made a pecan pie. He even left me a ball of dough in the freezer, so I can make a pie whenever I want. That's the kind of brother-in-law I like! D decided to replace half of the corn syrup with maple syrup in the pecan pie filling. This small change made a big difference. It made for a lighter, and not too sweet filling!
D's Perfect Pie Crust - Make 2 balls of dough
D follows his Aunt Cynthia's recipe. Luckily, I got my hands on a copy, with doodles of pie and flour bags that D drew when he was 13!
* 2 cups flour
* ½ tbsp sugar
* 1 tsp salt
* 1 cup vegetable shortening
* ½ tbsp vinegar
* 1 egg
* ¼ cup water
Combine flour, sugar and salt in large bowl.
Mix well with a fork.
Add shortening and mix with fork until crumbly.
In a small bowl, beat together water, vinegar and the egg with a fork.
Add to flour mixture, mixing until ingredients are moistened.
Divide dough into 2 portions.
Shape each into round balls.
Wrap each in plastic.
Chill at least half an hour.
Pecan Maple Pie
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma dessert.
You can use all corn syrup instead of the maple syrup if you prefer but the maple syrup really made a difference.
* Perfect pie crust recipe above
* ¾ cup - half corn syrup, half maple syrup
* ½ cup firmly packed brown sugar
* 1 tsp vanilla extract
* pinch of salt
* 1-⅓ cups pecans
Roll out the chilled dough on a floured surface until thin enough, according to the size of your pie pan.
Place the dough onto the pie pan.
Freeze until the shell is firm, at least 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 425F.
Line the frozen shell with aluminium foil and fill with pie weights, uncooked rice, or dried beans.
Bake for 15 minutes.
Remove the weights and foil, and continue to bake until the shell is golden, 4-5 minutes longer.
Let the shell cool completely on a rack.
Reduce the oven to 350F.
In a bowl, combine the eggs, corn syrup, maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla and salt.
Whisk until blended.
Pour egg mixture onto the crust.
Place pecans on top of the the egg mixture.
Bake until the filling is set and slightly puffed and the center still jiggles slightly when the pan is gently shaken, about 30 minutes.
Let cool on a rack.
Maple Whipped Cream
Because our dessert was not decadent enough, we thought we would continue with the maple syrup theme and make maple whipped cream. D obliged by going to buy some whipped cream.
½ cup heavy cream (35% fat), cold
maple syrup, to taste
Whip the cream until soft peaks form (my sister whipped it by hand).
Add maple syrup and continue whipping.
Serve the pie with some whipped cream on top
Adding maple syrup to make whipped cream.
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