For the first time in ever, I made a full on Christmas dinner. And while it was just for Kim and I, I didn’t tone it down any. The chances left overs would go to waste were pretty damned slim
Started off the day at about 6am with a quick French press of one of my current favourite coffees from Phil & Sebastian’s – Finca La Vina – Gautemala
After getting properly dosed with coffee, it was time to get started on the pecan pie. Kim was feeling a bit nostalgic and wistful about Christmas’s past back home, and had asked me if I’d be willing to make a pecan pie for our Christmas dinner. Far be it from me to deny my sweetie, even if attempting someone’s favourite dish fills me with a primal terror
Knob Creek Pecan Pie
2 cup (430 grams) dark brown sugar
1 1/3 cup (320 ml) Lyle’s Golden Syrup
3 tablespoon Knob Creek bourbon
8 tablespoons (112 grams) unsalted butter
6 large eggs
1/2 cup (120 ml) whipping cream
1/2 tsp fleur de sel
4 cups (150 – 200 grams) pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
Unfortunately for me, it doesn’t appear we can get Lyle’s Golden Syrup here in Canada so I made do with Roger’s Golden Corn Syrup. I learned a bit late in the game that Lyle’s is actually a cane sugar syrup, so I’ll be hunting down a source of that and giving this another shot
ETA: Turns out Safeway carries. Hallelujah and stuff!
Make the Pecan Filling: In a large saucepan, heat the brown sugar, Lyle’s Golden Syrup, bourbon, and butter until boiling, stirring constantly.
Remove from heat and let cool until tepid. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, whisk the eggs. When the boiled syrup has cooled, beat in the eggs, salt, and cream.
Remove the chilled pastry crust from the refrigerator and evenly distribute the chopped pecans over the bottom of the crust. Then pour the filling evenly over the nuts.
Bake for about 45 to 50 minutes, or until the filling is just set (a toothpick inserted into the center of the pie will come out clean. (If you find the edges of the pie crust are over browning during baking, cover with foil.) Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature with whipping cream.
Makes two 9 inch (23 cm) pies.
Note: To toast pecans – Place pecans on a baking sheet and bake for about 8 minutes in a 350 degree F (180 degree C) oven until lightly browned and fragrant. Let cool and then chop coarsely.
1 loaf of sourdough bread – I broiled the slices in the oven for about 8 minutes at 350F, then cut them into croûton sized squares.
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 tbsp. virgin olive oil
1 small white onion, chopped fine (1/2 c.)
3 Gravenstein apples, cored & chopped fine (1 2/3 c.)
1/2 c. pineapple orange juice
3 tbsp. coarse grain Maple Dijon mustard
1 tsp. sage, crumbled
1 tsp. thyme leaves, crumbled
1 tsp marjoram
1 tsp. fleur de sel
1/2 tsp. fresh cracked black pepper
1/3 cup raisins
1/3 cup craisins
Put cubed bread in a large bowl. Heat butter and oil in a large skillet over medium heat until butter melts. Add onion and a splash of pecan vinegar, cook 3 minutes, then stir in apples and cook for approximately 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the spices. Add the raisins and craisins. Pour over the bread; toss until blended and evenly moistened. Makes about 6 cups.
Preparing a turkey is a relatively straightforward thing. In my case it was a 7.5 kg grade A turkey, aka A Damned Big Bird ™. It *just* fit into my I poured a generous splash of Chardonnay into the bottom, covered it with tinfoil and then tosse it into the oven at 340F for about 4.5 hours, removing the tinfoil at the 4 hour mark. When the inside of the large thigh reached 180F, it was perfect.
Served it up with some beautiful mashed potatoes, and organic beats that I’d sliced up. Briefly sautéed the beets in unsalted butter, then added water and cooked on high medium, covered – added a generous splash of pecan vinegar and cooked til just tender.