Honey Bourbon Pecan Pie (Without Corn Syrup)

Pecans are some of the most expensive nuts to purchase in Singapore and Malaysia. Probably because pecans do not grow naturally here in the Southeast Asia. According to Wikipedia, pecan is native to the southern United States and northern Mexico. It’s no wonder that pecan is included in state symbols of Alabama, Arkansas, California, Oklahoma and Texas. Interestingly pecan pie is the official state dessert of Texas, among all other states that produce pecan.

Pecan pie is not that complicated to make. It starts with a standard pie crust or tart dough, as you would normally making a tart. Then, a sweet sticky caramel-like mixture made of eggs, corn syrup, sugar, butter, and pecan is poured into the crust and bake. A vast majority of recipes out there call for corn syrup for the filling mixture, but I have modified the recipe such that no corn syrup will be required. Instead, I replace it with honey and a bit of cake flour just to thicken the mixture. The pecan pie turned out to be just as good, with a nice balance between the richness of buttery pecans and sweetness from the caramel-like mixture.

A final tip here is: blind-baking of the pie crust is highly recommended. Why? This is because using a pre-baked pie crust, which is about 70% baked, will help to ensure that the pie crust is fully baked eventually while not burning the pecan filling.

Now, get your ingredients and tools ready. Let’s get the baking started!

Ingredients: (Yield: one 20cm rectangle pie, or one 7-inch round pie)

(A) Pie dough

  • Cake flour 100g
  • Almond powder 15g
  • Icing sugar 35g
  • Unsalted butter 60g
  • Whipping cream 20g

(B) Pecan filling

  • Unsalted butter 35g
  • Sugar 25g
  • Brown sugar 45g
  • Honey 30g
  • Cake flour 1 Tbsp
  • Bourbon whiskey (optional) 2 Tbsp
  • Egg 1 no.
  • Pecan nuts 100g (Toasted at 170C for about 8 minutes)

Method:

  1. To make the pie dough: In a mixing bowl, combine cake flour, almond powder and icing sugar together.
  2. Add in cold butter cubes. Rub or cut the butter cubes into the dry ingredients until fine crumbs form.
  3. Add whipping cream and mix to form a dough. Wrap the dough with plastic film and chill for at least an hour.
  4. After chilling and resting of dough, roll out the dough between sheets of parchment paper into 3mm thick. Then, chill the dough for about 15 minutes.
  5. Prepare a pie mould. Remove the parchment paper and line the mould with pie dough. Using a fork, pierce some holes at the bottom of the pie crust. Rest and chill the pie crust again for about 30 minutes.
  6. Next, we will blind bake the pie crust. Preheat oven at 170 degree Celsius. Place baking weight on the pie, and bake at 170C for 15minutes. Afterwards, remove baking weight and continue to bake for 10 minutes more. It is perfectly fine if the pie crust is not fully baked yet at this stage. Let it cool while we prepare the filling.
  7. To make pecan filling: In a pot, put in butter, sugar, brown sugar, honey and cake flour. Cook the mixture on medium heat, and bring it to a boil.
  8. Transfer the caramelized syrupy mixture to a mixing bowl. Add in egg and whisk to combine.
  9. Add Bourbon whiskey (this step is optional) and mix well.
  10. Put pecans into the pie crust, scattered them around. Pour the syrup mixture into pie crust. Make sure that all pecans are coated with the mixture.
  11. Bake in preheated oven at 170C for about 20 minutes or until the filling is set and pie crust is cooked.
  12. Let the pie cool down for about 10 minutes before removing it from the mould.
  13. Let cool completely on wire rack before serving.

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