Welcome back to Cookie Monday! Enjoy this week’s installment:
If there’s ever a discussion about what is the best type of pie, I think you should know that pecan pie beats all other pies by a mile. Apple pie has fruit, which in my mind no longer makes it a dessert and chocolate cream pie, while absolutely delicious, is not really baked, so I don’t consider it a true pie. Pecan pie, on the other hand, is rich and chewy, so dense that it takes quite a bit of effort to slide your fork through the whole slice.
Unfortunately, pecan pie is not always appropriate for every occasion. It’s more of a holiday dessert, and serving it at parties or events without plates or utensils gets a little unwieldy very quickly. With these pecan pie filled cookies, I kept the pecan and maple filling, and nixed the crust and pie pan, replacing them with a sugar cookie dough. A little cookie origami later, I had a portable, three bite piece of pecan pie without the headache of wrangling a delicate pie dough in a hot kitchen. Besides, who can resist the charm of a stuffed cookie?
Pecan Pie Cookies
Makes about 4 ½ dozen cookies
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1 ½ teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups pecans, toasted and chopped
3 tablespoons maple syrup
¼ cup half and half
2 tablespoons brown sugar
- For the dough: In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar and beat on medium until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until well combined. Add the baking powder, baking soda, salt, and flour and mix on low speed until just combined. Transfer the dough to the refrigerator to chill for at least 45 minutes while you make the pecan filling.
- For the pecan filling: combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
- To form the cookies: Pre-heat the oven to 350F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll 1 tablespoon portions of the dough into balls. Using the palm of your hand, flatten the balls into disks and place about ½ teaspoon of the pecan filling in the center of each disk. Fold up the edges of the disk to cover the filling, pinch the edges to seal the cookies, and roll them gently one last time. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheets, 1 ½ inches apart and bake for 10-12 minutes, until the edges are set. Remove the cookies from the oven, let cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then let transfer to wire racks to let cool completely.