All year long, we bakers turn out a variety of layer cakes, brownies and cookies, not to mention sticky fruity crisps and cobblers, but come November our thoughts turn to pie.
Perhaps we are prompted by the lackluster weather and barren landscape, or maybe it is because November a slower month, and we are able to make time in our busy lives for rolling pie crust and dedicating ourselves to the art of pie.
Pie can’t be slapped together like a loaf of banana bread or a batch of chocolate chip cookies; it requires more effort, yet yields richly rewarding results.
Yes, November is decidedly pie month and I’ve been developing a new flavour for about four weeks now. It all started with a shipment of organic coconut products from Canadian company, Grace. I couldn’t stop thinking about pairing their coconut sugar with pecans in a pie.
Generally, classic pecan pie is far too sweet for me, but coconut sugar is much less sweet than granulated sugar and, in addition, boasts a wonderful caramel flavour well suiting to pairing with nuts.
Well, one thing led to another, and by the end of my recipe testing I settled on today’s masterpiece: Marmalade Pecan Pie with Coconut Sugar, Bourbon and a hint of Chocolate. Stay with me now for the explanation – and recipe – behind this delicious fall pie.
I wanted to build several levels of flavour in this pie that were so memorable to the tongue, a small slice would satisfy any appetite. I believe I accomplished my goal, as this marmalade pecan pie begs to be slowly savoured, ideally with a cup of coffee. Let’s look at the unique ingredients that make up today’s recipe for they are mighty.
Marmalade brings a familiar sticky element to the pie, along with a pleasant, slightly bitter taste that cuts the overall richness. I must give credit to the lovely Camilla Wynne for introducing me to the marmalade + pecan pie combination. She’s the Montrealer behind Preservation Society and her cookbook is not only packed with canning inspiration, but recipes for cooking and baking with those preserves.
A dusting of dark cocoa powder marries happily with the citrus and deepens the flavour of the dessert. Chocolate is delightful with pecans, and heck, bourbon, too. Bourbon? Well, it’s not the holidays without a splash of spirits in our baking. Not only does it feel festive, but it rounds out the pie, much like a generous pour of vanilla would unify the flavours. Of course, if you prefer a pie without booze, you could substitute strong coffee in place of the bourbon and add a teaspoon of pure vanilla extract, too.
Coconut sugar in all its dark caramel-like glory adds a real complexity to the pie. Since coconut sugar may be substituted one-for-one with white sugar, we can use it in this recipe knowing that the end result will still be just like the classic texture of a traditional pecan pie.
Pecans still take the lead in this dessert, but I sprinkled a handful of coconut chips in as well and they add a delicious chewy texture to the final result. It’s nice to have some pecan halves for the top of the pie, but don’t worry if you only have chopped pecans.
This pie feels festive. Its unique flavours blend instead of compete. You’ll just have to try it for yourself to understand what I mean, so why not bring to the holiday table this season and share with seven or so of your closest friends.
Don’t forget the whipped cream.
|Marmalade Pecan Pie|| |
- 1 blind-baked, 9-inch pie shell
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 cup Grace Organic Coconut Sugar
- 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2/3 cup marmalade
- 2 Tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup boiling water
- 3 Tablespoons bourbon
- 3 Tablespoons Grace Organic Coconut Oil or unsalted butter
- 1 3/4 cups pecans
- 1/2 cup Grace Coconut Chips
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Crack the eggs into mixing bowl and add the coconut sugar. Whisk for about 2 minutes, until frothy. Whisk in the flour and the salt. Finally add the marmalade and whisk until the mixture is smooth.
- In another smaller mixing bowl, combine the cocoa powder with the boiling water. Whisk until smooth with no lumps. Pour in the melted coconut oil, followed by the bourbon. Stir to combine.
- Add both the chopped and halved pecans and the coconut chips to the pie filling. Mix well, then pour the filling into the prepared pie shell. Scrape the bowl to ensure all that sticky goodness goes into the pie.
- Place the pie on the middle rack of the oven and bake for approximately 45-50 minutes, rotating pie pan 180 degrees once during the baking time.
- Remove from oven and cool completely on a wire rack. Serve at room temperature.
For a pie without booze, substitute strong coffee in place of the bourbon and add a teaspoon of pure vanilla extract.
This post was sponsored by Grace. All opinions are my own. Grace products may be found in the international or organic section of major grocery stores and at walmart.ca.