Old-Fashioned Pecan Pie
A pecan pie without corn syrup. We certainly don't miss it.
Why This Recipe Works
The overly sweet, artificial-tasting pecan pies of today bear little resemblance to their 19th-century inspiration. Could we recreate a traditional pecan pie without using modern day, processed corn syrup?
We tried a host of traditional syrups (cane, sorghum) to replicate the flavors in a traditional pecan pie. While many produced great pies, we couldn't find them at our local supermarket and had to mail away for them. After exhaustive testing, we discovered that combining maple syrup with brown sugar and molasses replicated the old-fashioned pies almost as well as the mail-ordered syrups, and certainly much better than corn syrup ever could.
To ensure the bottom crust was crisp and golden brown, we started the pie at a high temperature and then dropped it down to finish cooking. Our crust was perfect, but the filling left something to be desired. A last-minute addition of cream yielded a welcome custardy transformation to the filling. This also made the filling looser; a problem easily solved by adding extra egg yolks.
To finish off our Pecan Pie recipe, we found toasting the nuts before they went into the pie gave them enough crunch and flavor to hold their own in the filling.