August 20: It's Chocolate Pecan Pie Day!


Crust:
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon shortening
2 to 3 tablespoons cold water


In medium bowl, mix flour and salt. Cut in shortening, using pastry blender (or pulling 2 table knives through ingredients in opposite directions), until particles are size of small peas. Sprinkle with cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with fork until all flour is moistened and pastry almost leaves side of bowl (1 to 2 teaspoons more water can be added if necessary).
Gather pastry into a ball. Shape into flattened round on lightly floured surface. Wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate about 45 minutes or until dough is firm and cold, yet pliable. This allows the shortening to become slightly firm, which helps make the baked pastry more flaky. If refrigerated longer, let pastry soften slightly before rolling.
Heat oven to 375°F. With floured rolling pin, roll pastry into round 2 inches larger than upside-down 9-inch glass pie plate. Fold pastry into fourths; place in pie plate. Unfold and ease into plate, pressing firmly against bottom and side. Trim overhanging edge of pastry 1 inch from rim of pie plate. Fold and roll pastry under, even with plate; press with times of fork or flute if desired.


Filling:
2 squares (2 ounces) unsweetened chocolate, melted
3 eggs
1 cup light corn syrup
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 cup pecan halves

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk eggs to beat slightly. Stir in melted chocolate, corn syrup, salt, vanilla, brown sugar, and butter; stir to blend well. Stir in nuts and pour into unbaked pie shell.
Bake at 400° F. for 15 minutes; reduce heat to 350° and bake 30 to 35 minutes longer. Outer edge of filling should appear set.

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