I can’t tell you how excited I am to have a requested dessert. Most of the time I bake things as experiments, testing them out on friends and coworkers, but this is different. Every Thanksgiving, my office requests that I make pecan pie for our potluck, friends and family ask me to make one for the actual holiday, and I even have cookie clients that ask “are you baking pecan pies this year”? This makes me happy.
It makes me even happier that I get to share it with you. This year for one of the office Friday Socials, someone brought in a walnut bourbon pie. It was so, so, so, so good. We all decided that I should do the same thing with my pecan pie this year, so I did.
My cupboard is slowly becoming stocked with small bottles of bourbon, whiskey and brandy from my current phase of boozy baking. It might be time to buy a few bottles of bitters and have a cocktail party!
I have one little note. I typically like to place the pecans individually in concentric circles, so it looks pretty, but I will admit, I think the pie may suffer if you really like pecans. I’m making a couple of pie for Christmas so I’m going to add chopped pecans to the filling and still place pecans on top. I’ll let you know how it turns out!
Bourbon Pecan Pie
for the crust
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter chilled and cut into small pieces
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water
for the filling
- 3/4 stick unsalted butter
- 1 1/4 cups packed dark brown sugar
- 3/4 cup dark corn syrup
- 2 tablespoons bourbon
- 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs
- 2 cups pecan halves (1/2 pound)
- 9 inch tart pan
make the crust
In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, salt, and sugar. Add butter, and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal, 8 to 10 seconds.
With machine running, add ice water in a slow, steady stream through feed tube. Pulse until dough holds together without being wet or sticky; be careful not to process more than 30 seconds. To test, squeeze a small amount together: If it is crumbly, add more ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time.
Divide dough into two equal balls. Flatten each ball into a disc and wrap in plastic. Transfer to the refrigerator and chill at least 1 hour. You can wrap the 2nd ball tightly and keep it in the freezer for about a month.
make the pie
Preheat oven to 350°F with a baking sheet on middle rack.
Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin into a 12-inch round and fit into a 9-inch tart pan. Trim edge, leaving a ½ inch overhang. Fold overhang inward and lightly press against rim of the tart pan. Lightly prick bottom all over with a fork, but do not puncture! Chill until firm, at least 30 minutes (or freeze 10 minutes).
Meanwhile, melt butter in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add brown sugar, whisking until smooth. Remove from heat and whisk in corn syrup, vanilla, bourbon, and salt. Lightly beat eggs in a medium bowl, then whisk in corn syrup mixture.
Pour corn syrup mixture evenly into the pie pan and place pecans in concentric circles, (if you have the patience, or just dump them in) on top of the mixture. Bake on hot baking sheet until filling is set, 50 minutes to 1 hour. Cool completely.