This Thanksgiving, let’s add some dark chocolate to our homemade pecan pie. Why mess with classic pecan pie perfection? Because not only do toasty pecans scream for a little dark chocolate, Thanksgiving desserts usually seem to be seriously lacking in the chocolate department. And for a holiday as special as Thanksgiving, I like to take the extra time and effort to make a braided pie crust. A light egg wash and the lightest sprinkling of sweet cinnamon sugar takes this crust right over the top!
You know you want a slice of this deep dark chocolate-y pecan pie on your dessert plate! Even if it's just a "little" slice!
I start with toasting the pecans, which really adds so much nutty flavor! While those are roasting and toasting up warm in the oven, let's get started with the filling!
All of your favorites are in this golden caramel filling. Melted butter starts us off, but we'll add dark brown sugar, dark corn syrup, fresh eggs and sea salt. Each ingredient has a specific purpose, and set up the filling so that it stays firm and tastes so silky and good! Make sure that you are using a good quality butter for this recipe - no margarine for us! And if you're feeling extra adventurous, you can also use browned butter as a starting point!
I prefer to use dark corn syrup and dark brown sugar, which gives this pie a deeper, richer flavor - but you can always use light corn syrup and granulated sugar if you prefer a lighter look and flavor. (I highly suggest that you give the dark brown sugar and dark corn syrup a try!)
Make sure that you use room temperature eggs. Room temperature are so important for this pie. Because of the melted butter in the filling, cold eggs will solidify and you'll end up with a filling that is not a smooth, silky and creamy, and patches of butter flavor and others that will just plain miss out on the butter flavor because it doesn't all mix up completely if the eggs are cold. Room temperature eggs definitely make a difference!
I use dark chocolate chips, because again, dark chocolate flavor is my favorite! If you can't get your hands on dark chocolate chips, you could also use semi-sweet chocolate chips. Or chop us a couple of dark chocolate bars. Sprinkle the chocolate chips or chopped chocolate on top of the pecans, and cover with the golden liquid filling.
This truly is one of the easiest pies to make from scratch. And the taste? AMAZING!
All that's left to do now is take a bite! Hope that you enjoy this as much as we do!
2 Pie Crusts (I use a portion of the second crust to make decorative edging)
Egg Wash: 1 egg (room temperature, beaten with a fork until frothy)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
½ cup dark brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
3 large eggs (room temperature)
1 cup dark corn syrup
1 tablespoon Rodelle Pure Vanilla Extract
½ teaspoon sea salt
2-1/2 cups (250g) pecans (toasted and chopped)
1 cup dark chocolate chips
Garnish: Fresh sweetened Whipped Cream, grated chocolate & whole pecans
HOW I MAKE THIS:
1. MAKE PIE DOUGH – you can do this ahead of time and refrigerate until ready to use.
2. TOAST PECANS - Toast the pecans on a baking sheet at 350 degrees for about 8 minutes, tossing them halfway thru. After they have cooled, chop into desired pieces. I usually toast a few additional pecans to use as garnish for the top of my pie.
3. Remove dough from refrigerator and allow to soften slightly (about 10 minutes) before rolling.
4. Roll dough into a 12-inch circle on floured counter.
5. Roll dough loosely around your rolling pin and unroll into the pie place, leaving at least a 1-inch overhand on each side. Working in a circular motion, ease dough into place by gently lifting edge of dough with one hand while pressing into plate bottom with the other hand. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate until dough is firm, about 30 minutes.
6. Lightly sprinkle flour into bottom of glass or ceramic pie plate (this will keep your crust from sticking to the bottom of the pie plate.) A glass pie plate works the best for this pie so you can see when the crust on the sides is browning, which signals that the pie is finished.
7. Trim overhang to ½ inch beyond lip of pie plate. Fold overhang under itself; folded edge should be flush with edge of pie plate. Using your thumb and forefinger, flute and crimp edge of dough evenly around pie plate. Use a fork to prick the dough all over the bottom and sides of the pie plate. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate again until dough is firm, about 15 minutes.
8. Adjust the oven rack to the lowest position and preheat to 350 degrees. Remove pie plate from refrigerator, brush the crust edge with an egg wash. Sprinkle top edge of pie crust with cinnamon sugar (optional).
9. Sprinkle pecans evenly inside pie crust and sprinkle chocolate chips evenly on top.
10. FOR PIE FILLING: Whisk the eggs, corn syrup, brown sugar, melted butter, vanilla and salt together in a large bowl. Once well blended and thick, pour evenly over top of pecans and chocolate chips.
11. Bake the pie for 40-50 minutes, or until the top is set and lightly browned. After the first 20 minutes of bake time, I place a pie crust shield on top of the pie to prevent the edges from browning too quickly. You can also tent a piece of aluminum foil over the whole pie if the top is browning too quickly. I also rotate the pie plate half-way thru baking. Remove finished pie from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool completely. The pie filling will set as it cools.
12. It is easiest to slice the pie when it is chilled, but best served at room temperature or warmed slightly. Garnish with whipped cream, chocolate shavings and additional pecan pieces, if desired.
13. Cover and store leftover pie at room temperature for 1-2 days or in the refrigerator for 4-5 days.
YIELD: One 9-inch pie
Originally posted November 2012; revised and reposted Nov 2014 & Nov 2017
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