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Author Topic: Pecan Tarts & Pies  (Read 257 times)

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Offline FoodSim

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Pecan Tarts & Pies
« on: July 22, 2022, 12:09:18 AM »
Pecan Tarts & Pies

Introduction

I knew the moment I decided to get silicone molds to make hamburger buns that I would also press them into tart-making service. Silicone, being nonstick and flexible, is ideal for demolding a potentially sticky tart. The molds were acquired from the following source:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B088D1NXMB/?tag=pmak-20

A couple nice properties of these particular molds are their volume and surface area relative to a pie. The amount of dough needed for a single 9" pie crust is almost exactly the same amount needed for six tarts. In essence, the following recipe is really for either six 4" tarts or, if the filling ingredient quantities are increased by 50%, a single 9" pie.

Filling

227.00 g (1/2 c + 2-2/3 T) light corn syrup
067.00 g (1/4 c + 1-1/3 T) granulated sugar
018.00 g (2-1/2 t) molasses
038.00 g (2-2/3 T) butter, melted
100.00 g (2 large) eggs
010.18 g (2 t) lemon juice
005.78 g (1-1/3 t) vanilla extract
001.82 g (1/3 t) kosher salt
000.67 g (1/3 t) ground cinnamon
000.33 g (1/12 t) ground nutmeg

Weights are exact. Volumes are approximate.

168.00 g (28 g 6) pecans, coarsely chopped

Pecan halves are measured for each tart separately, then coarsely chopped and used to fill the tart shell in the mold.

Note: I use this method to maintain nut strata consistency between tarts. Chopping all the nuts at once and drawing from a container or cutting board would result in filling the first tart with mostly large pieces, what's easiest to grasp, and filling the last tart with mostly small pieces or even powder.

Once the pecan pieces are in place, approximately 68 g of filling is poured over them for each tart.

Crust Dough

190.00 g (1-1/2 c + 2 t) all purpose flour
113.84 g (8 T) butter, tablespooned, 59F/15C
001.36 g (1/4 t) kosher salt
012.61 g (1 T) granulated sugar
044.00 g (3 T) water, 41F/5C

Weights are exact. Volumes are approximate.

I don't think there's anything special about this crust as far as its ingredients or their proportions are concerned. It's a great crust, but most pie crust dough recipes should be fine substitutes.

What could make a difference is the temperatures and methods, as I prefer a methodology that keeps things simple.

I use a hand mixer equipped with wire beaters on the lowest speed, and ensure the ingredients are at the specific temperatures stated above. Starting with a stick of butter cut into tablespoon slices, the fat marbling takes care of itself. The temperature of any ingredients not explicitly stated above is 77F/25C. The dough temperature after the ingredients just come together is 68F/20C. The dough is then cooled rapidly in the freezer to reach 41F/5C.

The dough is divided into 60 g balls. Each ball is rolled out (~5.82" diameter), placed in the mold, and trimmed flush. The final shell weight is 56 g.

Baking

For six tarts as described above, bake at 400F for 20 minutes. For a 9" pie, bake at 400F for 20 minutes, then an additional 20 minutes with aluminum foil tented over the pie.

The weight of each tart after baking is 150 g.

Conclusion

I have lived a significant portion of my life in the South, where I have sampled pecan pies from truck stops throughout Georgia to flea markets in North Florida. As I mentioned in Chitchat, these are the best among all the pecan tarts or pies I've ever eaten, produced or procured.

Fun Facts

I grew my own pecan trees, though I ate more of those pecans raw than cooked in pies. Fresh pecan meat straight off the tree and out of the shell might as well be a Schedule II Controlled Substance.

When one of the trees became infested with moth caterpillars (Automeris io), I torched it with the same flamethrower infamously mentioned in my bathroom story.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2022, 12:37:28 AM by FoodSim »
The yeast flies south in November.

Offline FoodSim

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Re: Pecan Tarts & Pies
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2022, 12:13:31 AM »
Here is a pecan tart and its cross section.
The yeast flies south in November.

Offline Betth

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Re: Pecan Tarts & Pies
« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2022, 10:47:08 PM »
As a child, I tried pecans and disliked them so much that I avoided them in any form for several years. But just a few days ago my husband brought it to me and didn't say what it was. And I suddenly liked it so much! So I will definitely try this recipe. Everything looks very tasty! My family loves the way I cook, I'm sure they will love these tarts

Offline scott r

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Re: Pecan Tarts & Pies
« Reply #3 on: August 31, 2022, 04:24:08 AM »
Love that your recipes are by weight too.  Thx for that, can't wait to make this one!

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