Whenever I’m feeling kind of meh, I have a few options. A nap isn’t usually possible (there are small children about), so I can either try to sneak episodes of whatever TLC show is new on Netflix without the li’l ones noticing, or I can make a pie. It’s hard to hide what my iPad is doing, so I think the pie wins this one.
Pie season approacheth. Can you tell I teach a lot of Shakespeare? Maybe not.
In my world, pie lives or dies by the crust. In other words, I don’t bother with pies that have mediocre crusts. That’s why this puppy has its own unique pecan shortbread crust. It’s so good.
Pecan pie isn’t something I discovered until my college days, but I’ve made up for plenty of lost time. And I’ve added chocolate to the mix, which is never a problem. At least, not for me. But you can leave it out if you like. Cue my sad face.
I need some tofu help, y’all. Whenever we go out, I really love eating tofu. It’s tasty with the right sauces and prepared well. But mine is not that good. See, I don’t like covering my tofu in sugary sauce, and that’s often the best way to make it. And I also don’t deep fry anything, ever. So can you guys share some of your tofu wisdom with me? I need something quick and easy.
Dinner is a challenge, not gonna lie. Every week, I come up with a dinner plan for each night based on everyone’s preferences. My son is a lost cause, since he eats pretty much two things in life. I work around Kenny’s gluten-free thing, my own aversion to beans, and the fact that we follow a kosher diet, which has a very long list of restrictions.
Truth be told, I’m tired of planning dinner, and I’m only ten years into life as someone who has to cook every night for other people. A small part of me misses the days when I was single and dinner could be a brownie, or half a bag of chips, or nothing. Sometimes I just napped through dinner and watched TV until bed.
How many of you really love planning dinner? When it comes to baking dessert, I’ll do it anytime. But dinner isn’t as much of a creative process, and therefore, it’s a chore. Plus, there are always kids needing help with homework or just jockeying for attention while dinner has to magically be made.
So, back to tofu. Any ideas? It’s gotta be vegetarian, not hard, no beans. Help me out here!
One thing I don’t need any help with is pie. One of the first pies I ever baked was a pecan pie because they’re so easy. Just mix and pour. No problem!
To spice things up a bit, this pecan shortbread crust is the base, and you will need a pastry blender or willing hands to make the texture of the crust crumbly before pressing it into the pie pan. But really, that’s the hardest part, and it’s not that bad.
I dumped a lot of chocolate chips in here, thus creating the melty goodness, and photographed this pie right out of the oven, since pecan pie is good warm. But if you want it to set up more, the chips float to the top along with the pecans while the bottom layer of pie is that sticky, gooey filling. However you like to eat the pie, do it that way. I chilled this after the photo shoot because I actually like my pie cold. Don’t mock.
Some cooking is a chore, but not all of it. Tofu and dinner planning might not be my bag, but I’ll make a pie any day. Who’s with me?
- Preheat the oven to 350. Grease a 10-inch pie plate with cooking spray.
- In a large bowl, mix flour and the brown sugar until combined. Cut in the butter and, using a pastry blender or your fingers, mix until crumbly. Stir in the pecans and press the mixture into the pie plate. Bake for 10-15 minutes until set.
- While the crust is baking, make the pecan pie filling. In a bowl, mix the first five ingredients until well combined. Fold in the pecans and chocolate chips.
- Pour the filling into the crust. Bake for 35-45 minutes until the center is set and no longer jiggly.
- Serve warm if desired, or cool. Cut into wedges.