Pecan Pie with a twist…

Delicious piece of Maple-Nut Tart

Delicious piece of Maple-Nut Tart

Maple-Nut Tart*

  • 1  our favorite pie crust (recipe follows)
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ cup packed light brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1.5 cups pecan pieces
  • 1.5 cups walnut pieces

Step 1. Preheat oven to 350°.  On a lightly floured piece of parchment paper, roll chilled dough into a 12-inch circle.  Carefully fit into 9-inch tart pan, gently lowering dough into bottom and sides of pan without stretching.  Roll rolling pin over edge of tart pan to cut off excess dough.  Set tart shell aside.

Step 2. In medium bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, and salt.  Then whisk in maple syrup.  Add nuts, and mix filling to combine.  Place tart pan on rimmed baking sheet, and pour in filling.  Bake tart until filling is set and crust is slightly golden, 55-60 minutes.  Cool completely in pan.  Remove tart from pan before serving.

*adapted from Everyday Food Issue #47, pg. 114, November 2007

Our Favorite Pie Crust**

  • 1.5 cups flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into pieces
  • 4 tablespoons ice water

Step 1. In a large bowl mix dry ingredients. Then using a pastry blender cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal, with a few pea-size pieces of butter remaining.

Step 2. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of ice water and continue to work dough with pastry blender, continue adding 1 tablespoon of ice water at a time until dough is crumbly but holds together when squeezed with fingers.

Step 3. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface, forming a ¾ inch thick disk.  Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour. (Or wrap in plastic, place in a resealable plastic bag, and freeze up to 3 months.  Thaw in the refrigerator before rolling.)

**adapted from Everyday Food Issue #47, pg. 88, November 2007

 

Raw dough

Raw dough

I offered to bring the Maple-Nut Tart to my husband’s cousin’s house for Early Thanksgiving Dinner.  I didn’t want to mess the tart up and I only had one chance to get it right.  We were going to the Syracuse football game on Saturday leaving me with a couple hours that night to bake before we headed out the next morning.  While reading the recipe for the Maple-Nut Tart I realized it was just a Pecan Pie with a few changes.

I usually avoid baking pies because I have some difficult shoes to fill.  I can’t compete with my mom and mother-in-law, and my mother-in law was most certainly going bring a few pies to Early Thanksgiving Dinner as well.  I guess it’s time to start practicing my pie skills…

I don’t own a tart pan and have no intentions of adding such a pan to my collection until I have a larger kitchen.  Considering the crust for the tart was just a pie crust I thought it would be fine to turn the ‘Maple-Nut Tart’ into a ‘Maple-Nut Pie’.  The pie crust was very easy to make and I really liked using butter instead of shortening.  I love using simple ingredients.  I know how butter is made, but I can’t say the same about shortening.  I was pleasantly surprised how easily the dough rolled out and did not stick to the counter.  I fit the crust into my Pyrex pie pan with NO problems.

MapleNut PieCrust

The maple nut mixture was also really easy to throw together.  Again very simple ingredients: eggs, pecans, walnuts, brown sugar, and maple syrup.    It was awesome to use pure maple syrup instead of corn syrup!  I like to eat maple syrup off a spoon (I can’t say the same for corn syrup)!  Although using a cup of maple syrup almost cleaned my supply out.  Good thing we always get some pure maple syrup from Lewis County every year for Christmas!

Uncooked Maple Nut Tart

Uncooked tart/pie

I baked the maple-nut pie for 60 minutes in my little unreliable oven.  The temperature ranged from 300-400°F.  I was a little nervous that the center was either going to be under- or overdone, but the outside looked delicious.  Only time would tell if my contribution to dessert was a success.

Finished product!

Finished product!

The following day when it came time for dessert I made sure P and I had a piece of Maple-Nut pie.  It was amazing.  The crust was done to perfection the outer layer of nuts and syrup was crisp and the center was nice in gooey.  Everyone else liked it too.  SUCCESS!

In the future if I ever need or want to make a pecan pie I am going back to the Maple-Nut Tart recipe!  Maybe next time I could even add some chocolate…

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