Nothing beats a home-cooked dessert during the festive season, and pecan pie is the ultimate choice when hosting during the winter break. To make yours ultra-special, Zahra Abdalla has shared this mouthwatering recipe from her debut cookbook, Cooking with Zahra.
“The delicious, flaky butter tart shell is filled with a sweet, rich pecan filling that has the comforting aroma of brown sugar,” the acclaimed culinary personality and author says.
MAKES 12 MINI PIES CRUST:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour plus extra for rolling
- 1⁄2 cup finely ground blanched almonds (or almond flour)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 heaped tsp brown sugar
- 1 cup unsalted butter, very cold, cut into 1⁄2-inch cubes
- 6 tbsp cold water
- 1⁄2 cup golden corn syrup
- 1/3 cup dark brown sugar, packed
- 1⁄4 cup melted butter, lightly browned
- 3 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 1⁄4 cups pecan halves, lightly toasted
- To make the crust, combine the flour, ground blanched almonds, salt and sugar in food processor; pulse to mix. Add the butter and pulse six–eight times. Then add the cold water, one tablespoon at a time, until the mixture begins to clump together.
- Remove the dough from the machine and place in a mound on a clean surface. Divide the dough in half, and gently flatten into two disks, without over kneading. Wrap each disk in cling film and refrigerate for at least one hour, ideally overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 200°C.
- To form the crust, remove one disk from the refrigerator, and allow to sit in room temperature for five–seven minutes. Roll out on a lightly floured surface into 12–13-inch round, about 1⁄8 inch thick. Wrap the dough around a rolling pin and carefully unroll over a nine-inch pie plate. Gently press the dough down so that it lines the bottom and sides of the tin and trim the excess dough.
- Place a piece of parchment large enough to cover the tin and fill with pie weights (or rice). Blind bake for 15 minutes. Remove the pie weights and parchment paper and continue to bake for an additional 15 minutes until the pastry is golden and set. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 170°C.
- To prepare the filling, combine the corn syrup, brown sugar, melted butter, eggs and vanilla extract in a medium-sized bowl and whisk until blended.
- Arrange the pecan halves on the base of the cooled and pre-baked pie crust and pour the filling on top. Bake until filling is just set but slightly soft in centre, about 40–45 minutes.
- Cool completely before serving and enjoy with a scoop of vanilla ice cream
2 TOP TIPS
- You can prepare the crust in advance, making the preparation of the pie easy before the guests arrive.
- Pecan pie is delicious served with some vanilla ice cream on the side.