Monday, July 29, 2013

Mama's (very large) Pecan Pie. 'Nuff said...

Last week I had an order for a pecan pie for an almost-family friend.  The recipient is the sister to a sister-in-law.  It was her birthday and she didn't want any sort of cake so her sweet spouse took it upon himself to order her favorite dessert:  pecan pie.

Like any child of the Deep South, there's only one pecan pie recipe to make.  Mama's.  She's made it for as long as I can remember, and indeed, the recipe is older than I am, being jotted down several years before I was born.

Favorite Child, aka Brother #4, was born in 1955, after almost a week of labor, some of it spent in traction from a slipped cervical disk (I'm so thankful he wasn't a girl or else I wouldn't be here tonight writing to you). It took a little while for her to recover from the birthing process, having had four sons in nine years time. Brother #4 was born in late summer and she was taking a noon-time rest, watching the news on WKRG out of Mobile, Alabama while waiting on As the World Turns and The Guiding Light to come on.  WKRG still has a local chef/cook come into the studio at noon, the same as the station did back in 1955.

Mama says that it was getting on closer to Thanksgiving after Brother #4 was born when WKRG premiered this pecan pie recipe.  She grabbed pencil and paper and wrote down the ingredients, much like I wrote them down some twenty years ago.

This recipe makes a deep dish ten inch pecan pie or two eight inch pies.  You'll notice there isn't a set amount of pecans -- that's entirely up to user discretion!

Here's what you do:

Beat five eggs until foamy and lemon-y in color.

Slowly add one cup sugar until well mixed.

Add one cup white corn syrup.

I can't tell ONE bit of difference between Karo brand
corn syrup and generic corn syrup.  Save your
dollars for something important like mayonnaise.

Add five tablespoons of melted butter.

Add vanilla.
I love using the little medicine dispenser cups for flavorings.
They have accurate measurements right on the cup
and are a whole lot of handy!

Pour into prepared unbaked crusts with desired amounts of pecans.
The fancy one on the left was for the client.  The ugly one on the right
was for fambly.  We like our pies with chopped pecans.  Whole halves
(if that makes any sense) are pretty in a pie, but won't cut worth a flip.
AND someone always eats out the center pecan within moments of coming 
out of the oven.  Sad, but true.  Sometimes that someone is me.
Use as many or as little pecans as you want here.  I used one a half cups
in the big pie and only a cup in the little one.

I like to put the pies on baking sheets to go into a 350 F. preheated oven.  They almost never cook over on a sheet.  Just let one go into the oven without a sheet, though.  That's one awful mess to clean up.

Bake until the center is set, anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes.  


Here are the ingredients again for one deep dish ten inch pecan pie or two thinner eight inch pies:

One or two unbaked pie crusts
Five eggs
One cup sugar
One cup white corn syrup
Five tablespoons melted butter
One teaspoon vanilla
Pinch of salt (I omit this, using salted butter)

Put it together like I did and you're sure to have deliciousness in an hour!

Y'all enjoy. 

<3 Mary