Pecan Pie with Decorative Leaves
If you don't have a cake ring, you can use a 9-inch springform pan instead; make sure the dough comes up 1 1/2 inches from the bottom of the pan.
- Yield: Makes one 9-inch pie
Photography: Jonathan Lovekin
Source: Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook
- Pate Brisee for Woven Dried-Fruit Tart
- 6 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- 1 1/4 cups packed light-brown sugar
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1/3 cup light corn syrup
- 1/3 cup unsulfured molasses
- 1 tablespoon bourbon or dark rum
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 2/3 cups pecans, coarsely chopped, plus 1/3 cup whole pecan halves
Set a 9-inch cake ring (with 1 1/2-inch sides) on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper; set aside. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out one disk of dough to a 13-inch round. With a dry pastry brush, sweep off the excess flour; fit dough into cake ring, gently pressing into the edges and up the sides. Freeze until firm, about 15 minutes. Using a sharp paring knife, trim dough flush with the top edge of ring. Chill pie shell until firm, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Line another baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the remaining dough to an 1/8-inch thickness. Using leaf-shaped cutters, cut out 12 leaves (we made seven larger ones for the outside edge and five smaller ones for the middle); transfer to the prepared sheet. In a small bowl, whisk together 1 egg and the heavy cream; brush over leaf cutouts, and transfer to the refrigerator.
Line chilled pie shell with parchment paper, leaving a 1-inch overhang. Fill with pie weights or dried beans. Bake until the edges begin to turn golden, about 20 minutes. Remove parchment and weights; transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the remaining 5 eggs, the brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, molasses, bourbon, vanilla, and salt. Stir in the chopped pecans. Pour filling into the cooled pie shell; arrange reserved leaves and whole pecans on top of pie.
Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. Bake until a knife tip inserted into the center of the pie comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Transfer the pie (still on the baking sheet) to a wire rack to cool completely before unmolding.