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Maple Pecan Pie

Yield: One 9-inch pie (9” x 1 ½”)

Degree of difficulty: Moderate

Prep Time: 1 hour 45 minutes

Bake Time: 1 hour 55 minutes

Total Time: 3 hours 45 minutes

Ingredients

For the Pie Crust:
1 pouch (1 pound / 454 g) Cup4Cup Pie Crust Mix
1 cup (1/2 pound / 225 g) unsalted butter, cold, cut into ½-inch cubes
1 large egg yolk
10 tablespoons (5 ounces / 140 g) ice water
Cup4Cup Multipurpose Flour, for dusting
5 cups (2 pounds / 908 g) dried black beans or dried white beans, for blind baking

For the Pecan Filling:
1/2 cup (7.5 ounces / 110 g) dark brown sugar, packed
1 cup (11 ounces / 310 g) Grade A amber maple syrup
2 tablespoons (1 ounce / 35 g) molasses
1 ½ teaspoons (4.5 g) kosher salt
½ cup (4 ounces / 120 g) heavy cream, at room temperature
6 large egg yolks, at room temperature
5 tablespoons (2.5 ounces / 70 g) unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon (13 g) bourbon
2 cups (8 ounces / 230 g) pecan halves
Honey, for brushing on the filling (optional)

Instructions

For the Pie Crust:
1. Combine the Cup4Cup Pie Crust Mix and cold butter in a food processor. Briefly pulse the machine a little at a time until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Alternatively, you can use a pastry cutter and bowl to achieve the same result. Transfer mixture to a bowl. Beat the egg yolk and ice water together and then add to the bowl. Stir until the mixture looks crumbly. Knead until a dough forms.
2. Divide the dough in half and flatten each half into a disc, about 5-inches in diameter. Wrap each disc in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 3 days in advance, or freeze for up to one month in advance.

To Blind-Bake the Crust:
1. Set a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F.
2. Remove one disc of pie dough from the refrigerator 15 minutes before rolling. Reserve the second disc of pie dough for another use. Use Cup4Cup Multipurpose Flour to lightly dust your work surface. Roll one disc into a 12-inch circle, about 1/8-inch thick, lifting the dough often to prevent it from sticking. For reference, 1/8-inch is about the same thickness as two pennies stacked together.
3. Fit the rolled out pie dough into a metal 9-inch pie tin that is 1 ½-inches deep. Be sure to use a pie tin that is made from thick, sturdy metal with a flat rim for the best baking.
4. Trim the dough so that it is flush with the edge of the pie dish. Alternatively, you may trim the dough so that it overhangs the pie dish by about an inch. Then, roll the edges of the dough underneath itself to form a rounded edge. The edge of the dough should remain on top of the flat surface of the pie dish. Use your fingers to form a fluted edge or crimp it with a fork, if you prefer.
5. Refrigerate the pie shell for 10 minutes so that the butter re-solidifies.
6. Place the chilled pie shell on a parchment lined baking sheet. Line the pie shell with a 16-inch round of parchment paper. Fill the shell with the dried beans, gently pushing the beans into the corners of the shell and filling the shell completely.
7. Bake the pie shell for 35 minutes and until the crust edge is deep golden brown but the bottom is still light in color. Remove the pie shell from the oven and remove the beans and parchment round. Return the pie shell to the oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes until the bottom of the pie shell is golden brown. Cool the pie shell to room temperature.

For the Pecan Filling:
1. Reduce the oven temperature to 300°F. Place the pecan halves on a parchment lined baking tray. Bake on the center rack for 28 – 30 minutes until the nuts are deep golden brown but not burnt. Remove form the oven and cool to room temperature. Set aside 1 cup of the best looking pecan halves. Roughly chop the remaining halves and also set aside.
2. Reduce the oven temperature to 275°F.
3. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, maple syrup, molasses and salt. Whisk in the cream. Whisk in the egg yolks. Whisk in the melted butter (still warm) and bourbon until thoroughly combined. Strain the filling through a fine mesh sieve set over a mixing bowl.
4. Add the toasted pecan pieces to the blind-baked shell in an even layer. Place the pecan halves on top. Pour the filling over the pecan shells. The shells may float. Place the pie onto a parchment lined baking sheet.
5. Bake on the center rack of a 275°F for 1 hour – 1 hour and 10 minutes and until the filling is set. When set, the filling will be puffed up along the edges and it will still be slightly wobbly in the center when gently shaken.
6. Remove the pie from the oven and cool for 10 minutes at room temperature. Carefully brush the top of the filling with honey to ensure a shiny top when the pie is fully cooled, if desired. Then, continue to cool at room temperature for 2 hours. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
7. This pie is easier to cut and it is best served when the filling is completely cooled and set up. Serve chilled or at room temperature. To store, cover and refrigerate the pie for 2 -3 days.

Tips

Toasting the pecans before adding them to the pie filling is essential for best results. Toasting the pecans brings out the flavor and it crisps up the nuts’ flesh. Additionally, thoroughly blind baking the crust until the crust edge is a deep golden brown will bring out the crust’s flavor and provide superior flakiness. We also recommend baking this pie in a pie pan that is made from thick, sturdy metal, such as the USA Pan Nonstick 9-inch Pie Pan.  A metal pie tin conducts heat well and bakes the bottom crust fully. Lastly, if your oven has not been calibrated for years we would recommend getting it checked. A few degrees off can affect baking times and quality. You can also use an oven thermometer to monitor and adjust the temperature as needed.