While we love all pies (and desserts in general) pretty indiscriminately and will eat just about anything placed in front of us, we especially love hearing about other people’s favorites. Asking about pie sounds like an innocuous prompt, but it can lead to a heated discussion where friends and family really go to bat for their preferred baked good, be it fruit-filled or cream-based, and you know there’s always someone in the group that’s a die-hard pecan pie fan. Regardless of season, someone in any group will only ever choose the rich and nutty dessert, exclaiming it’s the best pie around and can’t be beat. That is, until now….
Pecan pie used to involve making (or buying) a crust, rolling it out, crimping the edges, then filling it with a homemade pecan pie filling – one that’s not necessarily difficult to make, but is still several extra steps – and this dish cuts that whole process in half at least! What’s amazing is that the pecan filling practically makes itself as it bakes, so all you really have to do is make the cobbler topping that forms the perfect crust on top and then let the oven work its magic on the rest.
Melted butter and pecans go in the bottom of the dish, then the cobbler topping goes on, then a hearty sprinkle of brown sugar for the rich, dark flavor pecan pie is known for. Here comes the strange part: hot water then gets poured all over the top of the brown sugar, evenly coating the whole thing. Don’t get freaked out – the hot water just ensures the cobbler topping from being dry and keeps the pecan filling super dense and rich. Nothing dry or chalky about this dessert, thank goodness! We’re obsessed with this stuff, so give it a shot and see how you feel!
Serves 6-8; 45 minutes
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups pecans, roughly chopped
- 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2/3 cup whole milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups brown sugar, packed
- 1 1/2 cups hot water
- Preheat oven to 350º F.
- Place 6 tablespoons butter in 9x13-inch baking dish, then place baking dish in oven for butter to melt.
- Sprinkle pecans over melted butter, then set baking dish aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, milk and vanilla until mixture comes together.
- Pour batter over pecans and spread gently into an even layer. Don’t mix pecans into the batter once batter gets poured into baking dish.
- Sprinkle brown sugar in an even layer on top of cake (without mixing), then carefully pour hot water on top of sugar.
- Place baking dish in oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until cake is golden brown.
- Remove from oven and let cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.