I've been going back to Gonzales, Louisiana to check up on her; and during my last visit in November, she was doing so well that I got her back in the kitchen to cook up a Christmas family favorite: her scrumptious Mini Pecan Pies. Now, this is her kitchen, so in this latest Cajun Cuisine Diary Video I do things her way...or else!
This is a homemade recipe made with Mom's love, so you know it is delicious. Every holiday my wife and I receive a food care-package from her, filled with Mini Pecan Pies and Praline candies (I'll get that recipe on video for you next time I visit her.) Because they are half the size of a cupcake, they are easy to pack, and quickly travel through the cash strapped mail system. Mom has a special mini muffin pan that makes 24 pies at one time. You could make these mini masterpieces a little bigger in a more convenient cupcake pan, too.
But, Mom did help me keep things cheap. You will be surprised at how we got around paying $7.99 per pound for the main ingredient, shelled pecans. As for the other ingredients of brown sugar, flour, cream cheese, and a little butter and vanilla, they all come cheaply.
It's a surprisingly easy and quick recipe to make. The finished Mini Pecan Pies keep well -- just cover and store in a cool, dry place. Plus, they look tasty on a tray for your family Christmas gathering or office party. But, do keep them out of reach until you are ready to serve them, or they will quickly and mysteriously disappear!
So, check out my latest video, in which Mom and her cheap, chef of a son, butt heads in the kitchen while making a delicious recipe with humor and love.
Mom's Mini Pecan Pies Recipe - VIDEO
Play it here. Video runs 9 minutes, 31 seconds.
To view or embed from YouTube, click here.
Ingredients for Pie Crust (24 mini pies)
- 1 cup of flour - whole wheat or white flour
- 1 stick of butter - room temperature
- 3 ounces of cream cheese - room temperature
Directions for Pie Crust
Combine flour, butter and cream cheese into a bowl and mix well for about 3 minutes. Once dough comes together you can finish by making a ball on a cutting board or counter top.
Pinch off dough balls, about an inch to an inch-and-a-half in diameter, and add each one to to a 24-count muffin pan. It's okay to use a convenient 12-count cupcake pan -- of course, you'll make bigger pie crust balls, about two to three inches each. Spread the balls to the edge of each muffin mold shape. Now you're ready to add the chopped pecans and brown sugar filling.
Ingredients for Pecan Pie Filling
- 1 egg
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon butter - warm melted
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 cup of raw chopped pecans
Directions for Pecan Pie Filling
To prepare whole pecans, lay out a cup-full on a cutting board. Roughly chop the pecans so they will easily fit into each mini pie crust. Fill each mini pie shell with pecan pieces.
For the creamy filling, start by adding one egg to a bowl. Spoon in 3/4 cup of brown sugar, and two teaspoons of vanilla extract. Mix well. Spoon on enough pie filling to cover the pecans in each each pie cup.
Add the pie tray to a preheated 350 degree oven for 15 minutes. Then reduce heat to 300 degrees and bake for another 15 minutes.
Finally, remove Mini Pecan Pies from oven and allow to cool for five minutes. Carefully remove the pies from the pan. Mom used a short blade knife to loosen the pies.
Store Mini Pecan Pies covered in a cool dry place, and they can be served at room temperature.