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Classic and modern takes on pecan pie

Nov. 22, 2013
 
Having a classic assortment of pies is a good idea, but feel free to add a little twist such as this mocha pecan pie.
Having a classic assortment of pies is a good idea, but feel free to add a little twist such as this mocha pecan pie. / AP

If your Thanksgiving spread has just one pie — even if that one pie is of the classic pumpkin variety — you just aren’t doing it right.

A proper Thanksgiving requires multiple pies from across the pie spectrum. Pumpkin, of course, but also fruit. And not just one fruit. Ideally, you will have apple and perhaps a berry crumb. And let’s not forget the sweet and sticky pecan pie. We actually don’t care whether you pronounce it PEE-can or puh-CAHN, as long as you have it.

And to help you reach your Thanksgiving pie quota, we’ve given you a delicious basic honey-bourbon pecan pie, as well as a malted mocha variation. Just to play your pie game safe, we suggest making both.

Honey pecan pie and its malted mocha cousin

Start to finish: 1 hour

Servings: 8

1 1/2 cups lightly chopped pecans

1 cup honey

1 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

4 eggs

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

2 tablespoons Southern Comfort or bourbon OR the malted mocha variation (see below)

1 prepared deep-dish pie crust (store bought or homemade)

For the malted mocha variation:

1/2 cup Ovaltine

2 tablespoons instant coffee

2 tablespoons coffee liqueur

3/4 cup (4 ounces) chopped bittersweet chocolate

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Spread the pecans on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes, or until fragrant and lightly toasted. Set aside to cool.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the honey, brown sugar, salt, vanilla and eggs. Whisk in the melted butter, then either the liquor or the malted mocha variation (see below). Place the pie crust on a rimmed baking sheet. Spread the pecans in an even layer in the crust, then pour the honey mixture over them. Bake for 50 minutes, or until it no longer jiggles at the center.

For the malted mocha variation, stir together the Ovaltine, instant coffee and the coffee liqueur. Use this mixture in place of the Southern Comfort. Add the bittersweet chocolate to the crust at the same time as the pecans before pouring in the honey mixture.

For the honey pecan pie variation:

Nutrition information per serving: 610 calories; 280 calories from fat (46 percent of total calories); 31 g fat (9 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 110 mg cholesterol; 79 g carbohydrate; 2 g fiber; 64 g sugar; 6 g protein; 210 mg sodium.

For the malted mocha variation:

Nutrition information per serving: 740 calories; 330 calories from fat (45 percent of total calories); 37 g fat (12 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 110 mg cholesterol; 99 g carbohydrate; 4 g fiber; 79 g sugar; 9 g protein; 240 mg sodium.

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