Saturday, January 9, 2010

Pecan Pie (... but with walnuts)

Pecan Pie

Let me start by saying that I almost never make desserts. I really don't have a sweet tooth and well, as an intuitive cook who cooks by sight, smell and taste, I have a lot of problems with the exact measurements needed for baked goods (except bread). I am terrible with pastry and have no patience for it. However, over the holidays I decided that I was going to practice making pie crusts for both sweet and savoury pies and ended up buying a dough blender, perforated pie pan and a silicone pie crust guard thingy. All three sat there unused until today.

Even though I don't have a sweet tooth, I did previously enjoy a butter tart or two pre-vegan. Basically it's like a pecan pie, but without the pecans and you can find it in a package of two at most convenience stores in the great white north. I had a craving for them so I thought, hey, why don't I try the Pecan Pie (page 462) from the book?

The pie crust is pretty much like any standard pie crust — the kind that I am terrible with. Flour, fat, salt, sugar and water. I readied myself to struggle with it but it came together fairly easily with the dough blender. So much easier than a damn fork or two butter knives. If you don't have a dough blender, GET ONE. I substituted vegetable shortening for the margarine and upped the salt to almost 1 tsp.

While the dough was chilling in the fridge, I made the filling. As the liquid was simmering in the saucepan, I realised that I didn't have any pecans (doh!) but I did have walnuts which I thought was a worthy substitute.

Now on to the taste. The crust? I thought it was great! Flaky and rich, just like a pie crust is supposed to be. The filling was gooey and sweet but not sickly sweet and I can see it working with lots of different types of nuts, not just pecans (or walnuts). Colour me impressed I made a pie with a great flaky crust! I do need to work on my crust shaping but who cares, it was good! Now I still don't like making pie crust, but now I know I can actually make a decent one.

This is one delicious pie that I can see myself making again. Maybe next time I'll make them into little tarts, without pecans and a sprinkle of raisins. ;)

— Ms. Veganorama


  1. Yay! You baked a dessert, with pastry. I am so proud of you, as I can totally relate, because I hate the exact crap with baking, and I HATE making pastry (but I can do it if forced). I leave the sweets/baking to my wife!

  2. Thanks Cassie!

    Yeah, I really did NOT enjoy making the crust, but now I know I can make an okay crust for at least savoury pies. I think it turned out well because of the combo of the dough blender and the perforated pie plate. Mostly the dough blender probably since whenever I used a fork or two knives, I probably didn't cut it enough. :p

  3. I wish I had no sweet tooth so thanks for a great recipe. Great blog!!!!

  4. Is a dough blender different than a pastry cutter?

  5. Oh and your pie looks great! Good job!!

  6. Thanks! Yeah, it is the same thing but I guess they called it a dough blender so as not to confuse it with a wheeled pastry cutter.

    This is the one I have.

  7. Oh that one looks nice. I am not overly happy with mine, altho it is still better than none at all.

  8. The OXO one is pretty inexpensive and comfortable to hold. It's totally night and day using a proper one versus a fork (sucks) and two knives (sucks even more).

    It was totally worth the $11 I spent!


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