Sunday, December 20, 2015

Browned Butter Pecan Pie

In my family, no single person is responsible for all the holiday cooking, regardless of who is hosting the meal.  We are a potluck family, where each family member is assigned a dish or two to bring, so we can focus on just being together.  I had three separate holiday dinners to attend this Christmas, so I was sure I would be asked at least once to bring a dessert.  I had been dying to try out a new pie recipe, since I rarely have a good reason to bake a full-fat, decadent pie. Much to my surprise, everyone instead requested my "Crackaroni & Cheese", so I have found myself making a ton of macaroni and cheese, and alas, no pie.

I was (slightly) despondent, until I remembered that I had imminent plans to visit my dear friend Marina who recently gave birth to a handsome set of twin boys.  Every new mother deserves pie, right?  My friend's Canadian nationality inspired me to try out a recipe where I could use my newly acquired Canadian maple syrup, with a delicious soundning pie:  Browned Butter Pecan Pie.

I have one huge recommendation when you make this pie:  try to acquire Grade B pure maple syrup.  I had always assumed Grade A was better than Grade B, until I did a little research and learned that the lettering doesn't designate superiority, but instead just denotes a different style.  Grade B is less sweet than Grade A, but has a more complex flavor, making it better for baking (and pancakes, in my opinion).  

One more thing...this pie will freaking blow your mind.  Browned Butter Pecan Pie might seriously be my favorite pie I've ever baked, along with the best I've ever eaten.  The substitution of maple syrup for the overly processed corn syrup makes this pie taste so pure and yet so wonderfully complex.  My only problem with it?  I can't stop thinking about it!  

Browned Butter Pecan Pie

1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter
1 Cup Pure Maple Syrup (Grade B preferably)
1 Cup White Sugar
3 Large Eggs
1 tsp Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
1 tsp Pure Bourbon Vanilla Extract
1/2 tsp Salt
 9" Deep Dish Pie Crust
1 Cup Pecans, chopped


1.  Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and move the rack to the middle of the oven.

2.  In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat, whisking constantly, until browned, about 3-4 minutes.  Turn the heat down to low and stir in the sugar and salt.  Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.

3.  Pour in the maple syrup and stir.  In a small bowl, beat the eggs, and then add into the sugar-syrup mixture, stirring until well blended.

4.  Stir in the chopped pecans, lemon juice, and vanilla.  Whisk constantly until smooth (it will try to separate if you let it sit), and then immediately pour mixture into the pie crust. 

5.  Bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes, with a baking pan underneath to catch drippings.  

6.  Reduce heat to 350 degrees, and bake for an additional 40 minutes, or until set.  Let cool for several hours.  Store covered at room temperature.  

1 comment:

  1. I see you've adopted 'Crackaroni!' Excellent idea! :) Oh, and this recipe looks really tasty too! Whenever I get the itch to bake/make something for no good reason (holiday, etc...) I just take the 'leftovers' to work and send some to work with JR. I get the satisfaction of baking/making, but without the committment of having to eat it all myself. So.... make it, have a slice.... and send it to Ryan's work! :)