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Classic Pecan Pie

Prep time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Serves: 8 to 10

2½ cups pecans, ½ roughly chopped and ½ left whole
3 eggs
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp salt
Sprinkle of black pepper
1 Tbsp molasses
1 cup light corn syrup
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp dark rum (optional)
1 9-inch prepared pie shell (or your favorite homemade crust)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

2. Arrange the pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet. Toast in oven for 4 to 5 minutes, until lightly browned. 

3. Whisk together the eggs, sugar, salt, pepper, molasses, corn syrup, melted butter, vanilla, and rum (if using).

4. Add the pecans. Pour the mixture into the shell, and place the pie on a baking sheet in the center of oven. Cook for 45 to 50 minutes. The center should be somewhat firm when you gently "shake" the pie. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Serve warm.

Multitasking mom Alex Guarnaschelli is host of the Food Network's The Cooking Loft and executive chef of the New York restaurant Butter. 

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