pecan nut pie – Justin Bonello style

My husband, Garith, went to a friend’s house last weekend for a good old-fashioned LAN…so a whole bunch of guys get together and play computer games against each other till the early hours of the morning. So I decided, as they need to keep their sugar levels up that I would make a delicious and traditional pecan nut pie. What better book to turn to than Justin Bonello’s new cookbook – Cooked in the Karoo.

My husband kindly saved or stole me a piece so I could taste my creation and I say say…yum! It is a recipe I will be keeping to make again soon!

As I am sure you have noticed by now, I can’t just follow a recipe blindly, I need adapt it and make it more to my taste. I did exactly that with Justin’s recipe. Below is how I adapted it and also a few tips from my side.

My tips and variations of Justin’s recipe: 

  • Don’t forget you need to rest your pastry in the fridge for about an hour…this is very important. It allows the glutens to relax and means that your pastry won’t shrink or loose its shape. I came across Matt Preston’s pastry tips and they are awesome – click and check them out!
  • If you do not have a 23 cm dish, then you can use a 22 cm one, the mixture will fit, you will just have left over pastry which is not really a problem.
  • I used baking beans to blind bake mine – if you want to do this then you need to bake for at least 15 – 20 mins and not the 10 that Justin suggests. As my sides were perfect but the bottom was still raw.
  • If you let the sweet egg mixture stand for a while (which I don’t recommend) then you must beat it again before pouring it into the dish with your pecan nuts because all the brown sugar sinks to the bottom and becomes separated from the rest of the mixture.
  • I like my pecan nut pie to have lots of pecan nuts so I adapted Justin’s recipe slightly to include alot more pecan nuts.
  • Also remember to save some to place on the top once you have added the sweet egg mixture…as this just makes it look pretty 🙂
  • This pie is also best made the day before you want to eat it as it gives the pie time to set properly and also develop those sweet caramel flavours a little more.

P.S my husband took the gorgeous photo below as I had to run out and buy goodies for a friend’s baby shower. I think I have trained him well as he took an awesome photo.

Pecan Nut Pie - Justin Bonello's Recipe

Pecan Nut Pie – Justin Bonello’s Recipe

pecan nut pie – Justin Bonello style


    For the pastry
  • 1 cup of cake flour
  • pinch of salt
  • ⅓ cup of cold butter, cut into small cubes
  • ½ tbsp of castor sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 tsp of iced water
  • 1 tsp of lemon juice
  • For the filling
  • 3 extra-large eggs
  • ¼ cup of melted butter
  • 1 cup of caramel brown sugar
  • 1 tsp of vanilla essence
  • ⅓ cup golden syrup
  • 1 - 1 ¼ cup of pecan nut halves


  1. Sieve together the flour and salt, then using your fingertips rub the blocks of cold butter into the flour until it resembles crumbs.
  2. Add the castor sugar to the flour. Mix in the egg yolk, water and lemon juice. The mixture will look like it won't come together but knead the dough for about ten minutes and you will see that it will come together beautifully.
  3. Now, wrap the dough in cling film and let it chill in the fridge for about an hour.
  4. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  5. Roll out the dough using a rolling pin (or if you don't have one - Justin Bonello suggests an empty wine bottle). Line a 23cm loose-bottomed greased pie tin or dish, making sure to line the edges as well.
  6. Prick the base of the pastry with a fork and blind bake in the oven for ten minutes. If you would like to use baking beans, you will need to blind bake for longer, about 15 minutes.
  7. While the pastry is in the oven, use an electric hand blender or stand mixer to beat the eggs. Then, while still beating, add the melted butter, brown sugar, vanilla essence and golden syrup. You will notice that the mixture becomes foamy, and that’s when it’s ready.
  8. Arrange the nuts in the pastry case, and pour the sweet egg mixture over the top.
  9. Bake for approximately 40 - 45 minutes.
  10. Allow to cool. Best served with generous dollops of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.


  1 comment for “pecan nut pie – Justin Bonello style

  1. 9 March 2016 at 8:34 am

    Nice Article…..

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