In medium bowl, mix flour and salt. Cut in shortening, using pastry blender (or pulling 2 table knives through ingredients in opposite directions), until particles are size of small peas. Sprinkle with cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with fork until all flour is moistened and pastry almost leaves side of bowl (1 to 2 teaspoons more water can be added if necessary).
Gather pastry into a ball. Shape into flattened round on lightly floured surface. Wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate about 45 minutes or until dough is firm and cold, yet pliable. This allows the shortening to become slightly firm, which helps make the baked pastry more flaky. If refrigerated longer, let pastry soften slightly before rolling.
Heat oven to 375°F. With floured rolling pin, roll pastry into round 2 inches larger than upside-down 9-inch glass pie plate. Fold pastry into fourths; place in pie plate. Unfold and ease into plate, pressing firmly against bottom and side. Trim overhanging edge of pastry 1 inch from rim of pie plate. Fold and roll pastry under, even with plate; press with times of fork or flute if desired.
In another medium bowl, beat all filling ingredients except pecans with wire whisk or hand beater until well blended. Stir in pecans. Pour into pastry-lined pie plate.
Cover edge of pastry with 2- to 3-inch-wide strip of foil to prevent excessive browning. Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until center is set, removing foil for last 15 minutes of baking. Refrigerate at least 2 hours until chilled before serving. Store in refrigerator.
“Once you’ve made a pecan pie in a cast-iron skillet, you may never go back to a pie plate. Simply press a refrigerated pie crust into the skillet, sprinkle with sugar, top with the pecan mixture, and bake. Serving it in the skillet is also easy and makes the dish even more Southern.”
Yield: 8 to 10 Servings
1/2 (14.1-oz.) package refrigerated piecrusts
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 teaspoons bourbon*
1 1/2 cups pecan halves
Preheat oven to 325°. Fit piecrust into a 10-inch cast-iron skillet; sprinkle piecrust with powdered sugar.
Whisk eggs in a large bowl until foamy; whisk in brown sugar and next 6 ingredients. Pour mixture into piecrust, and top with pecan halves.
Bake at 325° for 30 minutes; reduce oven temperature to 300°, and bake 30 more minutes. Turn oven off, and let pie stand in oven, with door closed, 3 hours.
*Vanilla extract may be substituted.
Recipe by by Sylvia Subialdea, Hungry Texan (hungry-texan.com), Dallas, Texas, Southern Living OCTOBER 2011
*If desired, use a combination of dried berries (cherries, strawberries, blueberries, and cranberries)
Directions: Shell the pistachio nuts. Preheat the oven to 325°F degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil. Spray the foil with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside. In a shallow baking pan, spread out the nuts and put in the oven to keep warm while the glaze is made.
To make the glaze, put sugar in a large, heavy skillet. Heat over medium-high heat, shaking the skillet several times to heat the sugar evenly (do not stir). Heat until the sugar begins to melt (it will look syrupy). Stir the melted sugar to keep it from over browning; shake the pan and stir gently to incorporate remaining unmelted sugar as it begins to melt. Reduce heat to medium-low. Continue to cook until all the sugar is melted and golden. Add the butter to the skillet and stir until the butter is melted and mixture is combined. Remove from heat.
Stir in salt. Add warmed nuts to the skillet and stir to coat. Pour nut mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Cool completely, then break into clusters.
Store nuts in airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week.
Before serving, transfer to a bowl and stir in raisins, dried fruit and orange peel.
Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Styling: Cindy Barr, Jan Gautro, Leigh Ann Ross
Yield: 2-1/2 cups (Servings size: 2 Tablespoons)
1 tablespoon grated orange rind
1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
1 large egg white
2 cups pecan halves
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle chile pepper
1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries
Preheat oven to 225°.
Combine first 3 ingredients in a medium bowl; stir with a whisk. Stir in pecans. Combine sugar, salt, and pepper. Add to pecan mixture; toss well. Spread mixture in a single layer on a jelly-roll pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 225° for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Remove from oven; cool completely. Stir in cranberries.
Note: Store in an airtight container for up to one week.