Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Lady's Night In

Hello Internet!
Today I'm pleased to present a guest post from my friend and coworker, Suzy.  She knits the most amazing things - purses, mittens, sweaters - such a creative individual.  And she also cooks, which means we have plenty to talk about!

Without further ado, here's Suzy
I love Astrid’s blog, especially the posts on food and recipes.  I too love cooking and eating and taste-testing the goodies featured in the blog.  Last fall Astrid suggested I guest blog, after I interviewed her for our office intranet “Features Page”.  I told her I’d think about it.  And now I'm ready! 
My Christmas gifts from my out-of-state daughters and their beaux gave me a great idea.  From daughter #1 and her Louisiana fellow I received 2 pounds of hand-picked and shelled pecans.  How could I have ever though nuts from the store were good enough?  These were so sweet and fresh and tender – yumo, as Astrid would say.  

From daughter #2’s young man I received a basket of Vermont goodies, including an extremely large bottle of Grade B maple syrup – perfect for baking.  When my husband perused the Maple Syrup Cookbook by Ken Haedrich and found a recipe for Maple-Pecan Pie, a plan began to take shape. 

January is my month for hosting book club and the host prepares a dessert.  What better way to brag on the great gifts, gals and guys than to bake this pie.
Rather than using the recommended butter crust in the recipe, I used ⅓ of the “Good Luck Pie Crust” stored in my freezer.  This no-fail gem has been my main stay pie crust for years because it stands up to handling and can be made in a food processor and freezes well.  I’ve been playing around with its fat content because I like the crumb of a butter crust and it calls for just shortening.  This batch is half shortening, half butter so it ends up sturdy and flaky.


  • 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups pecan halves
  • crust


  • Stir syrup, brown sugar, corn syrup and butter in medium saucepan over medium heat until sugar dissolves and butter melts. Increase heat and boil 1 minute. Cool to lukewarm, about 45 minutes.
  • Position rack in bottom third of oven and preheat to 350°F. Roll out crust dough on lightly floured surface to 13-inch round. Transfer to 9-inch-diameter glass pie dish. Trim dough overhang to 1 inch. Fold edge under, forming high-standing rim; crimp decoratively. Freeze crust until firm, about 20 minutes.
  • Whisk eggs, vanilla and salt in 4-cup measuring cup to blend. Gradually whisk maple syrup mixture into egg mixture. Stir in pecan halves.
  • Pour filling into crust. Bake pie until filling is slightly puffed around edges and center is set, about 55 minutes. Cool pie completely on rack. DO AHEAD Can be prepared 8 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature. Cut pie into wedges and serve


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