Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Demise of Gourmet

The one little treat I allowed myself on moving to the US was some food magazine subscriptions. An annual one can be had here for about $15, it certainly beats €5+ per issue back in Ireland. They do come filled with direct marketing blurbs but they just go straight into the bin in my house. I went for Bon Appetit, Saveur and Gourmet. I'd only received one issue of Gourmet when the news came that Conde Nast were to halt publication, I guess Bon Appetit was the more profitable of the two magazines in their stable. Personally Gourmet has always been my favourite, the one I purchased every time I travelled across the Atlantic. They have also published some nice anthologies of writing from the first 60 years of the magazine, one of which focused solely on articles about Paris. The one issue of Gourmet I did receive was the Thanksgiving one, with its multiple variations on the theme from traditional to vegetarian. I stuck with the traditional for my first Thanksgiving and made this pecan pie.

The quantities below make enough for one full 9" pie (to bring to Thanksgiving dinner) and two mini ones (for next day leftovers!)

Pecan Pie
adapted from Gourmet magazine Nov 2009

1 1/4 cups flour
1 stick butter, cold and diced
1/4 tsp salt
ice water, 3-5 tbsp
  • rub butter into flour until it resembles breadcrumbs
  • stir in salt (no sugar needed, the filling is sweet enough)
  • add the water, starting with 3 tbsp, until dough just comes together
  • wrap in cling film and refrigerate for at least 30 mins
  • remove from the fridge and leave for 5 mins before rolling out
  • roll out into a circle and fit into a 9" pan, trim the edge of the pastry
  • use leftover pastry to line two small pie dishes
  • chill in the fridge for 30 mins while you make the filling
1 stick unsalted butter
1 2/3 cups light brown sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
3 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp orange zest
1/2 tsp salt
4 eggs, beaten lightly
10 oz pecans halves
  • preheat oven to 180 C
  • melt butter in a pan on the hob, add sugar and whisk until smooth
  • remove from the heat and add the corn syrup, vanilla, zest and salt
  • whisk in the eggs
  • scatter pecans over tart shell and pour mixture over them
  • bake until filling is set in the middle, about 50 mins
  • leave to cool before slicing