Mrs. American Pie

A lot of things have kept me busy since my last post. First, this happened:

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And then this happened:

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Now I am officially Mrs. Jubilee!On to tastier things!

There’s something about pie. Pie is about as American as a dessert can be. pie is the dialect of the people that made it. It is unique to each place. Each pie has a familial narrative, is the talk of the town, a keeper of secrets, and a story. Pie is the epitome of comfort food. I love hearing the creation myths that have passed down over the generations about a particular place’s pie. Pie is a competitive sport. It is home. Pie is an icon.

I hated pie growing up. Probably, because I never ate a good one. Sorry, Baker’s Square, your pies suck. It doesn’t matter how many free slices you give out or how many orders you have to fill over the holidays. Your pies are a mass produced imitation of the American Dream. Maybe, just maybe, I’m being to harsh. Maybe I’m a pie tyrant that wants to wipe inferior pies off the face of the earth. Eh, er, well that puts some things into perspective.

The only pie I enjoyed was pecan pie. Pecan pie was the first pie I ever made. The most important element to making a spectacular pie is a good crust. None of that shortening bullshit, people. It’s about butter. Some lard too, if you’re into that kind of thing. I use an all butter crust to get the rich flaky texture I like. It browns perfectly and has a depth of flavor that adds richness to cut sweetness. Also it’s good for quiches, which is a bonus.

The secret to making an unforgettable pie crust is using all cold ingredients and cutting the fat into the flour quickly. To do this I use a food processor.

Crust Tips

  • freeze the butter
  • add ice to the water before you measure it out
  • A drier dough is flakier
  • don’t let the dough get warm, ever.
  • refrigerate the dough for about 20 minutes so the fat and water can hydrate the flour
  • let it warm up until it is pliable but still very stiff and cold.
  • Roll it out as thin as you can
  • Once it is rolled out and into you pie dish cover the crust in butter. Butter needs no excuse.
  • Refrigerate the crust before adding the filling unless you’re adding a top layer. If you do have some lattice work etc. cool it after you have done your magic.

Pecan Pie:

Bake at 350 for 45 to 60 minutes

9 ½ inch pie pan- deep

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Pie Crust

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoon nielsen-massey vanilla bean paste
  • 1 cup salted butter, cut into 1 tbsp. pcs., very cold ( I put them in the freezer
  • 1/4-1/2 cup ice cold water

 Directions

  1. In a food processor add all the dry ingredients and give them a quick pulse.
  2. Add the butter and pulse till the butter is cut into the flour
  3. Add vanilla
  4. Add ¼ C water. Check the dough after this. It should be pliable and not sticky. Add more water if necessary
  5. Refrigerate for 20 minutes
  6. Roll all of the dough into a 10 ish inch “circle”
  7. Put in pie pan- cut off excess dough
  8. Do something fancy and impressive with the edge
  9. FREEZE until ready to fill

Filling :

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups corn syrup (I use 1 C dark and 1/2 light)
  • 4 eggs (use good eggs)
  • 1/4 cup salted butter
  • 1  tablespoon nielsen-massey vanilla bean paste
  • 1 1/2 cups pecans, coarsely broken
  •  Fancy pecan halves to decorated the top
  • 1 ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 oz bourbon

 Directions

  1. Melt butter
  2. Add sugar and corn syrup into a sauce pan and gently boil for a few minutes. never stop stirring it and don’t let it boil over your pan. Make sure the sugar is completely dissolved. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool down a bit
  3. In a medium sized mixing bowl beat together the eggs with a whisk
  4. Temper the eggs by adding about a ¼ of a cup of the syrup mixture and constantly stir
  5. Slowly pour in the rest of the syrup while stirring
  6. Add melted butter, vanilla bean paste, bourbon and salt. Mix
  7. Mix in chopped pecans
  8. Add to pie crust
  9. Do fancy topping
  10. Next coat the pie crust with butter. Make a dome out of foil and cover the pie (keeps the crust and pecans from burning) for about 30 minutes
  11. Take the foil off and rotate the pie
  12. Melt ¼- ½ C butter. When the pie is still hot brush the crust with butter and pour the rest of the butter over the pie.
  13. Let the pie cool and set. I know this part is difficult. Don’t eat it when it’s still warm because it will not slice. If refrigerated bring it to room temperature before serving.
  14. Buy larger pants

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