Just in time for the holidays, I present to you the Pecan Pumpkin Pie. This is a pie for those who want to bake something for their holiday dinner and can’t decide which one to concoct. And this is also a pie for those of you that can’t decide which slice you want for dessert. This tasty pie comes courtesy of The Gourmet Cookbook, edited for the maximum delicious by Ruth Reichl.
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 stick (8 tbsp) cold, unsalted butter cut into 1/2-inch squares
1/4 tsp salt
3-4 tbsp ice water
Blend together flour, butter, and salt in a bowl with your fingertips, or pastry blender (or do what I did and pulse in a food processor) until mixture resembles a course meal with pea-size lumps of butter. Evenly add 3 tablespoons of ice water in mix and mix (or pulse) until combined. Squeeze a small handful of dough: if it doesn’t hold together add ice water a half tablespoon at a time, mixing or pulsing until incorporated. Don’t overwork the dough or pastry can become tough, which is great for street fighting but not pie making.
Turn dough onto work surface and split into 4 portions. With the palm of your hand, smear the portions in a forward motion to help distribute the butter. Gather the dough together into a ball. Place dough on plastic wrap. Press it into 5 inch disk. Wrap and place in refrigerator until firm, at least an hour. The dough can be kept for up to 1 day, just so you know…
While you’re waiting for the dough to firm up, make your fillings.
The pumpkin filling:
3/4 cup canned, solid pack pumpkin
2 tbsp packed light brown sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 tbsp sour cream
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
In a large bowl, mix all ingredients until smooth. Set aside.
The pecan layer:
3/4 cup light brown syrup
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp finely grated lemon zest
1 1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/3 cups (5.5 oz.) pecans, chopped if you need to do such a silly thing
In a large bowl, mix corn syrup, brown sugar, eggs, butter, vanilla , zest, and lemon juice until well combined. Stir in pecans. Set aside.
Yay! now you just have to assemble everything…
Place oven rack in center position. Pre-heat your oven to 375F. It’ll take about 8 minutes to heat up. that will provide you the time to get your pie shell ready.
Roll out your dough on a lightly floured surface, using a rolling-pin to make a 13 inch circle. Transfer to a 9 inch pie plate and trim excess to leave a 1/2 inch overhang. fold it under and crimp the edge as desired. Lightly poke the crust in several places along bottom with a fork and refrigerate for 30 minutes if desired (I didn’t put it in the fridge). Line with foil and place pie weights, rice or dried beans onto foil. Place on center rack and bake for 20 minutes. carefully remove foil and weights and bake pie shell until lightly golden, 6-10 minutes more. Remove from oven (leave oven on) and allow shell to cool.
Once shell is cool, evenly spread pumpkin filling over bottom of shell.
Carefully spoon pecan filling over pumpkin layer.
Bake the pie until crust is golden and filling is puffed, about 35 minutes (center should still be slightly jiggly). Cool completely on a rack.
The flavor of this pie really pops. It gives both the smooth spiciness of the pumpkin layer and the sweet caramelized pecan layer. It’s like a festive holiday in your mouth! The interesting thing about the flavor is that it’s so sweet, even with less-than-usual sugar fixing. I really enjoyed baking this because it was pretty easy. And the wait is worth the effort. My wife liked it too and suggested this be a tester for Thanksgiving. This pie will be one of the few (I’m not sure how many I’ll make, maybe 3) I end up making for the holiday. Have a great Thanksgiving and if I don’t add to the blog during this most wonderful time of the year, have a great holiday:)