Nov 23, 2016

Pecan Pie

Pecan Pie is my favorite !  And Thanksgiving every year opens the door for this wonderful, savory, rich, nutty treat to be part of the celebration. 

In 1970 we moved to the US from Panama, to be specific we moved to a small city in the High Desert in California, Barstow. During the summer of 1971 and 1972 we had the most wonderful family vacations, a week in the summer in La Jolla, California.  

Yes that La Jolla, the jewel city north of San Diego. 

Imagine, Mom and Dad and 5 children, Ana, Roger, Elena, Carlos  & Tobias, making the drive in the family station wagon, 177 miles, roughly 3 hours and being transported from a desert landscape with yucca trees and desert sand, to the Pacific Ocean and the cliffs of La Jolla. 

I loved every minute of those special days in La Jolla. 

With a station wagon and a green Coleman cooler we made the best of long days at the beach and then in the evenings we got to enjoy local restaurants in the area. 

One of the places that we visited both times we were there, SU CASA restaurant for Mexican Food.  When you're a kid, eating out is such a treat and to have chips and salsa and then good Mexican food, it was wonderful.  The dessert menu in those years included PECAN PIE with vanilla ice cream.  All it took was one order of this pie selection and it's been my favorite ever since. 

can remember the pie serving being brought to the table, the pecans seemed foreign, out of place, perhaps too many, I was not sure of my selection. The pie had been warmed just a tiny bit and the vanilla ice cream was rich and creamy.  Everything about the pie, the pecans, the rich moist sweet filling and the pie crust, it was DELICIOUS ! ! !  After a long day at the beach, after lots of fresh air and excitement with siblings and parents, this was indeed the perfect way to end the day.   

Over the years I've had many different versions of pecan pie. My brother, Carlos for sometime perfected a recipe that called for a tablespoon or two of rum or was it whiskey. I've had the chocolate pecan pie version, not my favorite. And probably one of the craziest recipes, Pecan Pie Cheesecake.  

For many years I actually made pecan pies, working on strategies that would allow for more pecans and less filing, or least the perfect ratio, so the pie was really about pecans and not Karo syrup.  Part of the strategy always included lightly toasting the pecans, ever so delicately. 


SU CASA in La Jolla, CA. 

And then one year I ran into a Savannah's Candy Kitchen at an airport, I think it was the Phoenix and they had pecan pie by the slice.  

"Why not" I said to myself.  I'm on vacation, I can have pie ! 

I remember a lady in line ahed of me commented that the Pecan Pie from the Savannah Candy Kitchen is the only item she orders annually for her family Thanksgiving Holiday.  

For the past several years, I've done the same.  If you like pecan pie and you don't want to make one, I definitely recommend the selection from SCK.  I'm taking some to Ana and Parker's house tomorrow for our Thanksgiving dinner.  
At the same time, if you have an old, tried and true, special family, Pecan Pie recipe, send my way.  

Best Wishes to you and your family, friends, special guests, as you celebrate Thanksgiving tomorrow.