Arsip Tag: oatmeal

crisp salted oatmeal white chocolate cookies – smitten kitchen

These are scandalously good, yes, scandalously. Do you want to know why? Because I had one bite of one of these cookies and honestly think they’re one of the best cookies I have ever made. Like, top five good. Like, I think that the homemade Oreos just got the boot because I had to make room at the top. I hope the dozens of you who have made them can forgive me.

nom nom dough nom

It took me a long time to get an oatmeal cookie recipe on this site, and the reason was that most people really like oatmeal cookies, but they have a very specific view of what they should be. Some people like them heavily spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg, others want them buttery and nutty and still others think that if they don’t have chocolate chips or large gobs of dried fruit, they weren’t worth the oats they were cooked with. To add further complication, 99.9 percent of oatmeal cookies fall into one of two categories: thick and cakey or thin and lacy, and oh, how it all made my head spin.

smashy

Well, meet the new category: thick and shatter-y, and you’ll have to make your own to believe it. They’re crispy, but not because they’re hard or because they’re thin but because they practically hollow out when they bake, leaving you with this… shell of an oatmeal cookie with rich bits of white chocolate scattered about and the tiniest flaking of sea salt on top.

crispy, salted oatmeal white chocolate

Being not the biggest white chocolate fan and quite bored of every dessert coming with a fleck of expensive salt on top these days, I honestly didn’t expect anything this mind-boggling when I pulled a tray out of the oven, but I couldn’t be happier to be surprised. Now it’s your turn.

with white chocolate

One year ago: Pickled Garlicky Red Peppers

Oh, and this: We’re on vacation this week, so will not be able to respond to any comments, (crossing fingers this won’t be the case) typos or questions until we return. But seeing how we’ve left you with dulce ice cream, macaroni and cheese and now these, I bet you don’t miss us at all.

Crispy Salted Oatmeal White Chocolate Cookies
Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated

The original recipe didn’t have white chocolate in it, but it really works wonderfully in here. Even if you’re a dark chocolate fan. Watch out, use the good stuff and this may even convert you.

1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon table salt
14 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter, slightly softened
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

6 ounces good-quality white chocolate bar, chopped (not “white chocolate” chips; they’re almost always artificial. I am adamant about this.)

1/2 teapoon flaky sea salt (like Maldon or fleur de sel) (for sprinkling on top)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or Silpat. Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and table salt in a medium bowl.

2. Beat butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Scrape down bowl with rubber spatula, then add egg and vanilla and beat until incorporated. Scrape down bowl again. Add flour mixture gradually and mix until just incorporated and smooth. Gradually add oats and white chocolate and mix until well incorporated.

3. Divide dough into 24 equal portions, each about 2 tablespoons. Roll between palms into balls, then place on lined baking sheets about 2 1/2 inches apart. Using fingertips, gently press down each ball to about 3/4-inch thickness.

4. Sprinkle a flake or two of sea salt on each cookie

5. Bake until cookies are deep golden brown, about 13 to 16 minutes, rotating baking sheet halfway through. Transfer baking sheet to wire rack to cool.

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thick, chewy oatmeal raisin cookies – smitten kitchen

The last trick to getting a really thick, chewy cookie is to chill the dough before you bake it. You can scoop it and then chill it, or, if you’re like us, scoop it, freeze them and store them in a freezer bag so you can bake them as you wish. I find they’re always thicker when baked from the cold — only a couple extra minutes baking is needed.

This is a half recipe. It makes a couple dozen standard-size cookies. (I get more because I make them tinier.) I always feel like I’m swimming in cookies when I make the full volume, but if you’re feeding a crowd, go ahead and double it.

New note, 2/2/13: We’ve gotten in the habit (terrible habit, heh) of making these lately, Oatmeal Raisin Chocolate Chip-style. We use no nuts, 1/2 cup (80 grams) raisins and 3/4 cup (130 grams) chocolate chips for the mix-ins and highly encourage you to try it. When using chocolate, I drop the sugar down to a heaped 1/2 cup.

  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces or 115 grams) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup (125 grams) light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup (95 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (120 grams) old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup (120 grams) raisins (see Note)
  • 1/2 cup walnuts (65 grams), chopped (optional)
In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, egg and vanilla until smooth. In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt together. Stir this into the butter/sugar mixture. Stir in the oats, raisins and walnuts, if using them.

At this point you can either chill the dough for a bit in the fridge and then scoop it, or scoop the cookies onto a sheet and then chill the whole tray before baking them. You could also bake them right away, if you’re impatient, but I do find that they end up slighly less thick. Either way, heat oven to 350°F (175°C) before you scoop the cookies, so that it’s fully heated when you’re ready to put them in.

The cookies should be two inches apart on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake them for 10 to 12 minutes (your baking time will vary, depending on your oven and how cold the cookies were going in), taking them out when golden at the edges but still a little undercooked-looking on top. Let them sit on the hot baking sheet for five minutes before transferring them to a rack to cool.

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oatmeal pancakes – smitten kitchen

I don’t gush much, do I? I mean, I try not to be a gusher, someone who oohs and aahs so much, it loses meaning after a while, you know? I make exceptions of course: slaws, for one, and of course, Wee Jacob. I mean, look at him. Gushing is not optional for this mama.

huckle buckle, love this book

Nevertheless, I hope I do not go over my allotted amount of fawning when I say this: This is one of the most stunning cookbooks I’ve ever seen. I just gasped when I opened it. The photographs are gorgeous; softly lit and you can see the clear crust and crumb of everything inside. The recipes are beautifully typeset. I’ve been thinking about this stuff lately, ahem, I notice it.

oats

But it’s more than a pretty page, too. It’s a whole grain baking book and it is one of the smartest ones I have seen in the category, and here’s why: I am sure I’m not the only person who had decided one weekend morning to look up a recipe for whole grain pancakes and found a promising one. Whole wheat flour? Check. Bran? Check. Spelt? Nope. Teff? Urp. Muscovado sugar? Arrgh, I give up! It’s not that it won’t make a wonderful pancake, it’s just that you might have to go to three different health food stores to find what you need. And you only wanted pancakes. In this book, each chapter homes in on a different grain and most of the recipes within require only one alternative flour, occasionally two. Don’t have rye flour that day? Simply skip the chapter on rye. But of course you’d miss out on the most beautiful maple danishes and soft pretzels I’ve ever seen; that would be sad.

made some oatmeal
making oat flour

And here’s the part that I hope doesn’t come off badly, because I know what a loaded word this can be, but I don’t feel like this book has an agenda. Sometimes, just sometimes, when I read cookbooks that promote alternatives to the way we usually cook, I feel like I’m being lectured to. That the author might think I’m doing it all wrong, with my all-purpose flours and refined sugars, that I need to be changed. This book gets to the heart of the whole grain business, at least for me: not only are whole grain flours more nutrient rich, when used well, they taste better. They have more flavor. They have more complexity. The gap between the number of people using whole grains in their baking and the number of people who do not is easily bridged with a volume of killer recipes like this, recipes that would be less exciting with less robust ingredients.

oatmeal pancakes, stack tumbled

Back to the pancakes, which was obviously where I had to start because if you haven’t had pancakes for a Friday afternoon lunch before, you should. The only “unusual” (except, not really) the recipe called for was oats, and it was like winning the lottery to already have them on hand. Some of the oats are cooked into oatmeal — though if you’re one of those people who smartly make oatmeal in large batches, you can skip this — some are ground into oat flour (or you can buy some) and together they make a wonderful, barely-sweet pancake, fried in butter until the edges are crisp. Ours got decked out with Catskills Comfort Maple Syrup and sliced strawberries, but these would be equally good with a fruit sauce or compote. Or Nutella, okay fine, especially with Nutella.

strawberry slices, oatmeal pancakes

One year ago: Cinnamon Raisin Bagels
Two years ago: Green Bean and Cherry Tomato Salad
Three years ago: Barley, Corn and Haricot Vert Salad

Oatmeal Pancakes
Adapted and just tweaked a little from Good to the Grain

Makes about 18 pancakes

3/4 cup (90 grams) oat flour (you can make this by pulsing rolled oats into a food processor or spice grinder until finely ground; 1 cup of oats yielded 3/4 cup oat flour for me)
1 cup (130 grams) all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons (25 grams) sugar
2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon Kosher or coarse salt
3 tablespoons (45 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly (plus extra for the pan)
1 1/4 cups (295 ml) whole milk
1 cup cooked oatmeal*
1 tablespoon (20 grams) unsulphured (not blackstrap) molasses or 1 tablespoon honey
2 large eggs

Whisk the dry ingredients (oat flour, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt) together in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, whisk the butter, milk, cooked oatmeal, honey and eggs together until thoroughly combined. Gently fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Using a light hand is important for tender pancakes; the batter should be slightly thick with a holey surface.

Heat a 10-inch cast-iron pan or griddle over medium heat until water sizzles when splashed onto the pan. Lower to medium-low. (This is my tip; I find pancakes impossible to cook well over higher heats. I’ve got more pancake tips over here.) Rub the pan generously with butter; Boyce says this is the key to crisp, buttery edges. Working quickly, dollop 1/4-cup mounds of batter onto the pan, 2 or 3 at a time. Once bubbles have begun to form on the top side of the pancake, flip the pancake and cook until the bottom is dark golden-brown, about 5 minutes total. Wipe the pan with a cloth before griddling the next pancake. Continue with the rest of the batter.

Serve the pancakes hot, straight from the skillet or keep them warm in a low oven. We also found these to reheat surprisingly well the next morning, again in a low oven.

Do ahead: Although the batter is best if using immediately, it can sit for up to 1 hour on the counter or overnight in the refrigerator. When you return to the batter, it will be very thick and should be thinned, one tablespoon at a time, with milk. Take care not to overmix.

* Make oatmeal, if you don’t have any leftover: Bring 1 cup water and a slightly heaped 1/2 cup of rolled oats (old-fashioned or quick-cooking) and a pinch of salt to a boil and simmer on low for 1 (quick-cooking) to 5 minutes (old-fashioned), until thick. Let cool. This can also be cooked in a microwave.

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iced oatmeal cookies – smitten kitchen

What normal people often do is take a recipe for something floury, buttery and indulgent and try to make it healthier. Maybe they use less butter. They might dial back the sugar. But more often than not they swap in a little whole wheat or alternative grain flour and at least make something with more nutrients.

iced oatmeal cookies-1

But we’ve established by now that I’m not normal, and so, I did the opposite. I took a recipe for an oatmeal cookie with oat, whole wheat, rye, millet and barley flour within and I swapped in some unbleached all-purpose flour. And I did it for you! Yes, you.

iced oatmeal cookies-2

Let me explain: I tested these cookies for the first time last month as part of my duties as a judge in Food52’s Piglet Tournament of Cookbooks. I bought all of the flours I didn’t have already and I made them as written. They’re fantastic, by the way. A little lacy, reminiscent of something store-bought, you know, if store-bought cookies weren’t loaded with freaky ingredients like “raisin paste” and didn’t always taste like pale imitations of homemade. They don’t taste like something from a health food store, or something you’d make in January, because you were trying to be “good”. And I really wanted to tell you about them but I also really wanted you to make them. But to make them the way they were written in Good to the Grain (yes, my obsession continues) you’d need to buy a lot of flours I suspect most of us don’t normally keep stocked.

iced oatmeal cookies-3
iced oatmeal cookies-4

So I reversed engineered them to remove some of that whole grain goodness — it sounds so evil, right? And then I stole candy from a baby! Turned carolers away! Laughed when someone tripped! I kid, I kid. But I wanted to make sure they still worked no matter how few flours and am delighted to declare that whether you use white, brown or gray flour, it will have no effect on the speed in which they disappear, or my sadness that they are no longer, as I have had a profound cookie hankering since I was roused from sleep at 5:30 a.m. And no, not by a cookie offer but kid, if you want to mix that into your morning routine, your daddy and I might look a little less like death warmed over when we stumble into your den.

iced oatmeal cookies-5

One year ago: Vanilla Roasted Pears (Promise you’ll make these? Pinky swear?)
Two years ago: Cabbage, Apple and Walnut Salad, Dark Chocolate Tart with Gingersnap Crust and Veselka’s Cabbage Soup
Three years ago: Chicken and Dumplings
Four year ago: Bourbon Pumpkin Cheesecake, Apple Pie and Infinitely Adaptable Blondies

Iced Oatmeal Cookies
Adapted from Good to the Grain

Unlike most cookies, where spreading is a cause for concern, here, it is encouraged as it leads to a thinner, lacier cookie. (More or less, you want to do the opposite of everything suggested here.) Because the condition of my baking sheets is reprehensible, I lined mine with parchment paper instead of buttering them, but unfortunately, this impeded the spreading a little. I’m sure you all have unblemished and lovely baking sheets, and therefore are encouraged to butter them, as the recipe suggests.

Aside from playing around with the flours, my other changes were to streamline the oat measurement to include the oats you can use to make oat flour. I added weights as well, but don’t use them for the alternatively suggested flours, as they may weight more or less.

Yield: 30 3-inch cookies (with a 2 tablespoon or #40 scoop), larger if your spread more

Butter for baking sheets
2 1/2 cups + 1 tablespoon (8 1/4 ounces or 231 grams) old fashioned oats
1/2 cup (2 1/4 ounces or 65 grams) whole wheat flour
1 cup (4 3/8 ounces or 125 grams) all-purpose flour*
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoons (20 grams) baking powder
1 teaspoon (5 grams) baking soda
2 teaspoons kosher salt**
1 cup (8 3/8 ounces or 238 grams) dark brown sugar
1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces or 100 grams) granulated sugar
1 teaspoon (2 grams) cinnamon
1 teaspoon (2 grams) freshly grated nutmeg (I used less, because I was nutmeg-wary, but wouldn’t have minded more)
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
2 large eggs

Icing:
2 1/4 (9 1/2 ounces or 270 grams) cups powdered sugar
5 to 6 (75 to 90 ml) tablespoons whole milk
1 tablespoon (6 grams) cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt**

Preheat oven to 350°F with racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven. Rub two baking sheets with butter. In a food processor, grind 1/2 cup of oats to a fine powder, then add remaining oats and grind them all together until it resembles coarse meal, with only a few large flakes remaining.

Sift dry ingredients into a large bowl, pouring back any bits of grains or other ingredients that remain in the sifter. In a small bowl, whisk butter and eggs until combined. Using a spatula, fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.

Scoop balls of dough about 2 to 3 tablespoons in size (I used a #40 cookie scoop, which scooped 2 tablespoon-sized balls) onto cookie sheets about 3 inches apart. Bake for 16 to 20 minutes, rotating the sheets halfway through. When tops are evenly brown, take them out and transfer them to a cooling rack. Repeat with remaining cookie dough. Let cookies cool completely before icing.

In a bowl, whisk icing ingredients together until smooth. It should have a honey-like consistency. Drizzle the frosting over the cookies. Let the frosting set for 30 minutes (or more; it took longer at my place but by the next day, was fully firmed up) before eating. The cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to a week.

* The original recipe replaced this volume with a multigrain flour mix that worked out to 1/2 cup barley flour + 1/4 cup millet flour + 1/4 cup rye flour. If you have any of these flours, swap them in and reduce the volume of all-purpose.

** Saltiness of kosher salt varies by brand. I’d recommend 2 teaspoons if you use Diamond kosher salt, and about half as much if you use Morton kosher salt or another brand.

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black bottom oatmeal pie – smitten kitchen

Does anyone ever need an excuse to eat pie? Nobody we should be friends with, is my mantra. But, in an effort at inclusivity, here is a handy dandy excuse-finder, should you need a little convincing:

  • Because it is not Friday yet.
  • Because you probably woke up before you wanted to, and went to a job that even if you love, is still by definition something you wouldn’t do for free. Pie is an excellent consolation prize.
  • Because yesterday felt like spring and everyone’s 3-month bad mood instantly evaporated. Today you needed a hat and gloves again. And a slice of pie, warmed just enough that a scoop of vanilla ice cream trickles over it.
  • Because you’re probably never going to win that Maine Inn in time for lobster and blueberries season with an essay. (Although we are all rooting for you. And blueberry pie.)
  • Because if you’re in the Northeast, fresh fruit pies are still months off, which means you get to make pies with chocolate and gooey caramel instead.

butter into flour, sugar, salt ready to chillready to roll ready to trimcrimped weighted and parbaked

Notably absent: because it’s almost Pi Day. Seriously, guys, among all of the very compelling reasons to eat pie, the fact that the sixteenth letter of the Greek alphabet sounds like the word “pie” and has a numerical value that resembles the way a single country in the world writes its dates, and that date — 3/14/15 — will fall on Saturday is a bit of a stretch to use an excuse, even for someone who just argued you can and should eat pie just because the temperature dropped 12 degrees. Even the fact that this will be the nerdiest of Pi Days, because the year itself aligns with the fourth and fifth digits in the trillions-long patternless irrational number that represents the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter — you know, I can hear you snoring right now — is awfully convoluted of a rationale, especially when you could just make pie because this one is completely amazing.

toasted oats

bittersweet chocolate
a chocolate puddle to swan dive into

It’s a staff favorite at Four and Twenty Blackbirds, a pie shop with a seasonal focus in Gowanus Brooklyn started by two sisters that are third generation pie bakers from South Dakota. This says a lot among a menu that includes salted caramel apple, black currant lemon chiffon, grapefruit saltine and salty honey pies, many of which have already achieved cult status. Maybe you even bought their book (you should, you should) that came out in 2013. But if you haven’t made this oatmeal chocolate cookie meets pecan pie, no need to wait for a holiday invented by food media for an excuse.

golden syrup ftw
whisk whisk whisk

Dubbed the “poor man’s pecan pie,” the oats play the part that pecans usually do (which is also awesome if a nut allergy has been cruelly keeping you from it). But this doesn’t mean that you’re about to inhale a bottle of corn syrup in the name of a pie so sweet, you just bought your dentist another summer home. I mean, of course it’s sweet, but there’s so much else going on here — golden syrup or honey and molasses instead of corn syrup; apple cider vinegar, salt and a pinch of ginger to cut through the goo, and the pièce de résistance, a puddle of bittersweet chocolate at the base that nothing will ever be right without again. Eaten in the tiniest slivers — trust me, there’s no other way — or baked into bars (what I’m totally doing next time), if you’re going to bake a pie this weekend, let this be the one.

black bottom oatmeal pie
black bottom oatmeal pie

One year ago: Double Chocolate Banana Bread
Two years ago: Coconut Bread
Three years ago: Potato Knish, Two Ways
Four years ago: Sally Lunn Bread
Five years ago: Breakfast Pizza
Six years ago: Layer Cake Tips and The Biggest Birthday Cake, Yet
Seven years ago: Almond Biscotti and Roasted Acorn Squash and Gorgonzola Pizza
Eight years ago: Italian Bread

And for the other side of the world:
Six Months Ago: Herbed Tomato and Roasted Garlic Tart
1.5 Years Ago: Baked Pasta with Broccoli Rabe and Sausage
2.5 Years Ago: Roasted Apple Spice Sheet Cake
3.5 Years Ago: Red Wine Chocolate Cake

Black Bottom Oatmeal Pie
Adapted, just a tiny bit, from Four and Twenty Blackbirds

Crust:
1 1/4 cups (155 grams) all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons (6 grams) granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon (3 grams) fine sea or table salt
1 stick (4 ounces or 115 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks
1/4 cup (60 ml) very cold water, plus an additional tablespoon if needed

Filling
1 1/2 cups (120 grams) rolled oats
1/4 cup (60 ml) heavy cream
4 ounces (115 grams) bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup (145 grams) packed light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
5 tablespoons (70 grams) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup dark corn syrup (see Note below for replacements)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
4 large eggs

Make the pie dough:

  • By hand, with my one-bowl method: In the bottom of a large bowl, combine the flour, salt and sugar. Work the butter into the flour with your fingertips or a pastry blender until mixture resembles a coarse meal and the largest bits of butter are the size of tiny peas. (Some people like to do this by freezing the stick of butter and coarsely grating it into the flour, but I haven’t found the results as flaky.) Add 1/4 cup cold water and stir with a spoon or flexible silicone spatula until large clumps form. Use your hands to knead the dough together, right in the bottom of the bowl. If necessary to bring the dough together, you can add the last tablespoon of water.
  • With a food processor: In the work bowl of a food processor, combine flour, salt and sugar. Add butter and pulse machine until mixture resembles a coarse meal and the largest bits of butter are the size of tiny peas. Turn mixture out into mixing bowl. Add 1/4 cup cold water and stir with a spoon or flexible silicone spatula until large clumps form. Use your hands to knead the dough together, right in the bottom of the bowl. If necessary to bring the dough together, you can add the last tablespoon of water.
  • Both methods: Wrap dough in a sheet of plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour, or up to 48 hours, or you can quick-firm this in the freezer for 15 minutes. Longer than 2 days, it’s best to freeze it until needed.

Form the crust: On a floured counter, roll the dough out into a 12 to 13-inch circle-ish shape. Fold dough gently in quarters without creasing and transfer to a 9-inch standard (not deep-dish) pie plate. Unfold dough and trim overhang to about 1/2-inch. Fold overhang under edge of pie crust and crimp decoratively. If not parbaking, place in fridge until ready to fill. If parbaking, place in freezer for 20 minutes, until solid.

Par-bake the crust: [Optional, but will lead to a crispier base.] Heat oven 400°F (205°C). Line frozen crust with lightly buttered or oiled foil. Fill with pie weights, dried beans or pennies. Bake on a rimmed baking sheet for 20 minutes. Carefully remove foil and weights and let cool completely before filling.

Heat oven: (Or reduce oven heat, if you just par-baked your crust) to 350°F (175°C).

Prepare filling: Spread oats on a rimmed baking sheet and toast in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally. Set aside to cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F (165°C).

To make the black bottom, bring the cream just to a boil over medium heat in a small saucepan. Pour in chocolate pieces and whisk until melted and smooth. Scrape the chocolate into the bottom of the cooled pie shell and spread evenly. Place in freezer while making the filling.

To make the oatmeal layer, in a large bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, ginger, salt, and melted butter. Add the corn syrup, vanilla, and cider vinegar and whisk to combine. Add the eggs one at a time, whisking well after each addition. Stir in the cooled oats. Place chocolate-coated pie shell on a rimmed baking sheet and pour filling over.

Bake: For 55 to 70 minutes [updated: it sounds from the comments that more time than the original 55 minutes has been needed for several people], rotating 180 degrees for even color if needed halfway through. The pie is done with the edges are set and puffed slightly and the center is slightly firm to the touch but still has a little give — like gelatin. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack, 2 to 3 hours. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.

Do ahead: The pie will keep refrigerated for 3 days or at room temperature for 2 days.

A few notes:

  • Corn syrup is a popular, core ingredient in pecan pie, but it’s gone out of favor in the last several years. The original recipe here calls for dark corn syrup. Should you wish to use something else, I highly recommend tracking down a bottle of golden syrup (a cane sugar syrup that tastes faintly like caramel, and is amazing on pancakes as well) as a go-to replacement. I haven’t tested this with honey, but feel confident it will work well here too, although it will of course alter the flavor [updated to note feedback from those who have tried this with honey: it sounds like it makes it very sweet; you might compensate by reducing the brown sugar by 1/4 to 1/3 cup]. To emulate the “dark” part of dark corn syrup, I replaced 1 tablespoon of the syrup with molasses.
  • The Elsen sisters use a trick to keep the bottom crusts of their pies from getting soft when covered with heavy wet fillings — they parbake the crust, then brush it with an egg white wash (1 egg white whisked with 1 teaspoon water) and bake it on for a few minutes and letting it cool before filling the pie. I suspect that this is a great trick to keep in mind when you’re making those slumpy berry and stone fruit pies to this summer, but I didn’t care for it here; it made the bottom too papery/firm, and very hard to cut through, so I’ve skipped this step.
  • With a good gluten-free pie crust, this pie could easily be made fully gluten-free. And it’s already nut-free, if you love pecan pie but were being kept from it due to an allergy.
  • Finally, as mentioned, I think these would make an awesome bake sale- and life-winning cookie bar. I’d use the base here for an 8×8 pan of thick bar cookies. I’d also be curious to see if this could be stretched into very thin bars (my preference; I might be no fun at all) in a 9×13-inch pan. For that, I’d double the crust first, because you’re still going to want a good “handle.” Let them chill in the fridge completely before cutting for the cleanest lines.

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