For those with an affinity for All Things Pecan Pie (raising hand and jumping up and down right here), this is a spectacular addition to your repertoire. Buttermilk lends a tangy tart flavor, and the raisins are quite unexpected. At least for me they were, and I loved everything about it. Cooks Illustrated mentions that omitting the nuts and raisins makes this a buttermilk chess pie, so you can do that, too. Like all things Cooks Illustrated, it’s specific and very very tested. Happy Tuesday!
Buttermilk Pecan Pie with Raisins
1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus extra for dough and rolling surface
2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon table salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled, cut into 1/4 -inch pieces
2 tablespoons vegetable shortening, frozen, cut into small pieces
1 large egg white, chilled, thoroughly mixed with ice water (about 2 tablespoons) to equal 1/4 cup
1 large egg yolk, beaten with 1/8 teaspoon water
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon table salt
3 large eggs
2/3 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup whole pecans (2 ounces), toasted and chopped into small pieces
1/2 cup raisins, chopped fine
1. For Pie Crust: Mix flour, sugar, and salt in food processor fitted with steel blade. Scatter butter and shortening over dry ingredients.
2. Sprinkle egg white mixture over flour mixture and, with blade of rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix. Press down on dough with broad side of spatula until dough sticks together. Shape dough into ball with hands, then flatten into 4-inch disk. Dust dough lightly with flour, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and place in refrigerator for at least 1 hour or up to 2 days.
3. Roll dough on lightly floured surface into 13-inch circle and transfer to 9-inch pie pan, preferably glass. Press dough into corners and sides of pan, being careful not to stretch dough. Trim edges of dough to make 1/2-inch overhang. Tuck overhanging dough under so that folded edge is flush with rim of pan.
4. Chill shell until firm, about 1 hour. Prick sides and bottom with fork and line entire shell with heavy-duty aluminum foil, pressing foil firmly against shell and extending it over fluted rim, (illustration 2). Prick foil with fork (illustration 3) and return shell to refrigerator while oven is heating.
5. Adjust oven rack to center position and heat oven to 400 degrees. Bake, pressing once or twice with mitt-protected hands, if necessary, to flatten any puffing, until crust is firmly set, about 15 minutes. Remove foil and continue to bake until bottom begins to color, about 10 minutes longer. Remove from oven, brush sides and bottom with egg yolk, and return to oven until yolk glazes over, about 1 minute longer. Remove from oven, and set aside while preparing the filling.
6. Lower oven temperature to 275 degrees. Place pie shell in oven if not still warm.
7. For Pie: Melt butter in medium heatproof bowl set in skillet of water maintained at just below simmer. Remove bowl from skillet; mix in sugar and salt with wooden spoon until butter is absorbed. Beat in eggs, then buttermilk. Return bowl to hot water; stir until mixture is shiny and warm to the touch, about 130 degrees. Remove from heat; stir in pecans and raisins.
8. Pour mixture into warm shell; bake until center feels set yet soft, like gelatin, when gently pressed, 50 to 60 minutes. Transfer pie to rack; let cool completely,
Recipe reprinted from Cooks Illustrated