YOU GUYS IT’S SUPER PI DAY AND I CAN’T FUCKING BELIEVE IT

GUESS WHAT DUDES IT’S PI DAY, ONE OF MY FAVORITE DAYS! But this year, it is so much more than that!

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3/14/15 9:26:53. 3.141592653. TEN DIGITS, COUNT THEM. I have already experienced this amazing moment this morning, and look forward to experiencing it again in the PM. Pi is a magical number, Pie is a magical dessert, and Super Pi(e) Day is a magical, magical day for us all, and won’t come around again until 2115! It’s rarer (more rare?) than Halley’s Comet!  Today is also the Saturday before Saint Patrick’s Day but if you think I like green beer more than pie YOU WOULD BE VERY WRONG.

How should we celebrate?

How about…

BOOZE AND PIE, SUCKERS!!!!

Bourbon Pecan Pie
Adapted from the Food Network 

  • Enough dough for a single crust pie, rolled out into a round
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 2 cups chopped toasted pecans
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons bourbon
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Roll out dough and place in the pie pan. Crimp edges.
  3. In medium saucepan, combine the butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat, and stirring constantly, continue to boil for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and stir in the nuts, bourbon, and the vanilla.
  4. Set the mixture aside to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. Whisk the beaten eggs into the filling until smooth. Put the pie shell on a sheet pan and pour the filling into the crust.
  5. Bake on the lower oven rack until the edges are set but the center is still slightly loose, about 40 to 45 minutes. (If the edges get very dark, cover them with aluminum foil half way during baking.) Cool on a rack. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.

THE RUNDOWN:

1. Gather your shit.

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Here it is. Here is all of the shit. You will notice that my crust appears to be store-bought. That’s because it is. Haters might say that if you don’t make the crust yourself, you’re just “assembling” a pie. I might say that haters can go “fuck themselves” while you eat your goddamn delicious pie without them. Listen. I’ll teach you how to make pie crust sometime, ok? I just happen to think that crust is kind of a pain in the patoot when you can buy perfectly delicious crust, and it cuts the pie-making time in half. Plus I have other thangs to do besides massaging butter chunks into flour.

2. Prep your crust.
If you’re making your crust from scratch, you’d do that now. If you’re me, you take the rolls of dough out of the Pillsbury box and you praise that crazy little white monster that giggles on their commercials. Let the crust warm up a bit if it was in the fridge, so it can get a bit pliable. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and then gently roll the dough out.

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The dough will already be in nice flat rounds, but unless you have a smallish pie plate, this won’t be quite enough for you. I have a beautiful 9-inch plate that Laura gave me for Christmas a couple years ago, so I definitely needed to grab a rolling pin and roll it out a bit more. Because this thins the crust, I usually use both of the dough rolls in the box, just layered right on top of each other. This way, I can roll the dough out to my desired size, while also keeping it nice and thick. Because no one likes a matzoesque thin-crust pie. No one, I say! Roll that puppy out until it’s about 2 inches larger than your pie plate on all sides.

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Flip your pie plate right-side-up if you got crazy and mimicked the image above. Gently lift the dough and place it into the pie plate, and press it into the “corner” between the floor and the wall of the dish. Make sure it’s fairly centered, so that the extra dough is even all around the edge.

IMG_3311That looks like shit, right? Right. So, now pick any ole place on the edge and roll the extra dough in to the lip of the pan. Just roll it OVER, rather than under, so that the seam will be inside the crust and will get covered by the filling later on. It kind of looks a mess as you’re going along, but persevere!

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Roll roll roll all along the edge, keeping it nice and tight (yeah, I said that), until you get back to where you started. I note that it needs to be fairly tight, because if it’s loosely rolled, it may come undone while baking.

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If you like, you can stop here, but you can also make it pretty if you choose. There are many ways to do this, both with your hands and with various tools you can pick up at basically only Williams Sonoma (you will have to pay in gold bullion and full, throaty laughs about your mysterious husband Jeffrey, just FYI). I simply pinch the dough between my left forefinger and thumb, and push against the other side of the edge with my right thumb, which makes a nice simple crimp. It also has the benefit of keeping the crust together as it bakes, so it’s less likely to unroll in the oven. If the hand-technique I just described makes absolutely no sense to you, either google some methods, or wait a bit until I have time to do a pie crust post. It may be a… bittish bit, so google might be a better option. I unfortunately couldn’t take the photos myself, as I have yet to grow extra arms. #foreveralone

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Now your crust is good to go! That was the hard part.

3. Prep your filling.
The filling happens on the stovetop – you have to make an easy caramelish type of sauce – and things can happen rapidly, so prep everything first. Measure out your pecans into a bowl or something, measure out and combine the bourbon and vanilla into a small bowl, and lightly beat the eggs. They don’t need to be fully mixed or anything, but make sure that the yolks are broken and semi-distributed. You will notice I used some fancy birthday bourbon, but it was what I had on hand.

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4. Get cooking on the stovetop.
Combine the brown sugar, salt, butter, and corn syrup in a saucepan. If you have something nonstick, that will make cleanup a little easier, but any saucepan will do.

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It will look kind of lame, but put the heat on medium high and stick to your guns until it boils. Stir constantly to make sure that everything melts together and nothing burns.

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Keep going.

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Once everything is melted and comes to a rolling boil for about a minute, turn the heat off. Then slowly pour in the bourbon/vanilla. It will splatter for some reason related to chemistry, so be careful. If you’re afraid of it, first, please stop being afraid of food, but second, pour in a little bit at a time. The molten sugar will burn the shit out of you if you touch it, so don’t. Once the bourbon/vanilla is all stirred in, add the pecans, and stir again. Do not add the eggs yet, for the love of god. The mixture is too hot and will cook the eggs, ruining your expensive pecans. Let it all cool for about 5 minutes before adding the eggs.

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Once you’ve waited about 5 minutes, give the mixture another good stir, and go ahead and add the pre-birds (shout out to my homie Tom Haverford). As you add them, stir constantly so that they distribute in the mixture and don’t overheat. Once they’re all mixed in…

5. Pour the slop into the prepared crust.
The mixture will still be hot, so do this carefully. If the mix doesn’t fill the crust the whole way, that’s fine, because the crust will shrink a bit and the filling will rise. You’ll see. Also, I suggest that you immediately fill the empty saucepan with hot water and let it soak, so that the sticky filling doesn’t get rock hard in the pot. But do what you want, you have free will.

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6. Bake (duh).
Slap the pie on a sheet pan in case anything bubbles over in the oven, and bake at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes. When you take it out, the middle of the pie should still have a little wiggle to it; it will not only continue to cook for a bit after it’s out of the oven, but it’s also a custardy pie and so it shouldn’t be totally hard. If you overbake it, you’re going to need a chisel to get it out of the pan, so good luck with that. I don’t know any miners. 

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See, look! The crust got smaller and the filling got bigger. Gosh, isn’t it cute. I love you, pie! Let it cool to room temp, and enjoy responsibly. Be good to each other, and above all, wish your fellow (wo)man a happy pi day! 

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2 thoughts on “YOU GUYS IT’S SUPER PI DAY AND I CAN’T FUCKING BELIEVE IT

  1. Pingback: A pie crust, a peach pie, and rage. | emma talks about food

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