I do love pecan pie, but it can get heavy and sweet. The addition of cranberry sauce helps temper the sweetness, and the addition of chocolate makes it awesome. This recipe is lightly adapted from Ken Haedrich’s Pie.
1 recipe of your choice single pie crust
1/2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup light corn syrup
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup or honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
2 cup chopped pecans
1/4 cups chocolate chips or chocolate chunks
1 cup whole-berry cranberry sauce (see note at the bottom)
1. Prepare the pastry and refrigerate until firm enough to roll, about 1 hour.
2. On a sheet of lightly floured waxed paper, roll the pastry into a 12-inch circle with a floured rolling pin. Invert the pastry over a 9-inch standard pie pan, center, and peel off the paper. Tuck the pastry into the pan, without stretching it, and sculpt the edge so it is just slightly higher than the rim of the pan. Place in the freezer for 15 minutes, then partially prebake (see note at the bottom). Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
3. In a large bowl, combine the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and salt. Rub them together well, breaking up any clumps of sugar. Whisk in the eggs, followed by the butter, corn syrup, maple syrup, vanilla, and lemon zest. Stir in the pecans, chocolate, and cranberry sauce. Carefully pour the filling into the cooled pie shell.
4. Place the pie on the center oven rack and bake until the filling is set, 40 to 45 minutes, rotating the pie 180 degrees halfway through the baking, so that the part that faced the back of the oven now faces forward. When done, the filling should not be soupy in the center. Give the pie a little nudge to check.
5. Transfer the pie to a wire rack and let cool to room temperature. Serve immediately, or cover with loosely tented aluminum foil and refrigerate for several hours before serving.
-Don’t measure the cranberry sauce directly from the can or container because the jellied part tends to settle to the bottom. Empty the entire can into a small bowl, stir well, and then measure it.
-I’ve used both fresh cranberry sauce and sauce from a can. The fresh is MUCH better. Trader Joe’s sells really nice cranberry sauce that works well for this recipe.
-To partially bake your pie crust, first preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Once it’s preheated, take your pie crust out of the freezer and line the whole crust with a sheet of heavy duty aluminum foil (it should fit like a second skin, and let the excess foil extend out like wings). Fill the pie crust with pie weights or dried beans. (These hold the crust down so it keeps its shape as it bakes.) Bake for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, carefully remove the foil and weights or beans from the pie shell. Prick the pastry all over with a fork. (This allows steam to escape as the pastry bakes.) Lower the oven temperature to 375 degrees and continue to bake the pie shell for 10 to 12 minutes for a partially baked crust. Remove from the oven and let cool before adding the filling.
And don’t miss the next step on the recipe tour: LECIA CORNWALL’S QUICHE LORRAINE!