I’ll start with a THANKS this week – I realised a few days ago that I’ve reached 100 followers – yay! Thank you for reading and liking and commenting and hanging around – it is much appreciated :).
I also have good news, and bad news. The bad news is, that my oven isn’t fixed. It seems to have some kind of intermittent fault which it doesn’t show off when the electrician comes around. That said, the electrician did believe us when we told him it was rubbish, so he’s recommended that the landlord buy us a new one. I am in full agreement with this decision. But, these things take time, so who knows when we’ll actually get a new one. All I know is that my cooking plans are continually thwarted by only having a hob to work with (although, I suppose that’s better than nothing at all and having to buy takeaway).
The good news is that I think I do actually have some recipes on my list which don’t require an oven, so I’m going to decide on one of those and hopefully it won’t derail my blogging plans too much!
On to the pecan pie!
I made pecan pie for my dear mother for Mother’s Day this year. I actually ended up making it first thing Monday morning, because by the time I got to my parents’ house after work on Sunday they were in the midst of making awesome roast dinner, and with a tiny kitchen, it’s hard for people to be doing two different things at the same time, so I figured it was best to wait. It’s been a while since I’ve baked in that kitchen, and it was kind of weird having to try and remember where everything was kept, having to ask my brother where the flour now lived etc. But it all went off without a hitch – hurrah! Part of me was expecting to get to the potential egg scramble stage and get it wrong and have to start over, but after my recent pastry cream making, I think I’ve learnt the art of adding hot liquid to eggs, and so it was all fine. One very happy mother (and father and brother and sister).
Pecan Pie (from The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook)
200g caster sugar
250ml golden syrup (or preferably dark corn syrup if you can get hold of it)
1/2 tsp salt
60g unsalted butter, cubed
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
100g pecan nuts, chopped, plus extra to decorate
1. Preheat oven to 170C/Gas 3. Lightly dust a clean work surface with flour, and roll out the dough with a rolling pin. Line the prepared pie dish with the dough and trim the edges with a sharp knife. (I believe in blind-baking pastry – this recipe doesn’t call for it, but I think it’s better, so you can line the pastry with greaseproof paper, fill with baking beans (or rice) and bake it for 15 mins or so before putting the mixture in)
2. Put the sugar, corn syrup (or golden syrup) and salt in a large saucepan over medium heat. Bring to the boil, then remove from the heat and leave to cool down slightly (I left it for 10-15mins, and that seemed to work fine).
3. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs briefly with a balloon whisk until they are just mixed. Slowly pour the warm (not hot!) syrup into the eggs, stirring briskly so that you don’t allow the eggs time to scramble.
4. Add the butter and vanilla extract to the bowl and stir until the butter has melted and is evenly dispensed.
5. Put the chopped pecan nuts into the pie crust, then pour the filling on top. Arrange the pecan halves gently on top of the filling around the edge of the pie. Bake for about 50-60 mins, or until a dark caramel colour with a slightly crusty surface. (Note: it might bubble up, so don’t be surprised when you open the oven and it’s not flat – as it cools it will go back down!)
Next week: whatever I can find on my list that doesn’t require an oven to make.