This pie is for Marjie, who has been raving about it since the first day I brought it in to the office (an excellent strategy for convincing me to make it again and again and again …)
Sometimes you want a pie that requires minimal labor and just uses ingredients that you already have in the house. This is exactly what Four and Twenty Blackbirds’ Salty Honey Pie delivers. It’s an old fashioned custard that tastes modern due to it’s trendy salty-sweet flavor. It’s also just darn delicious!
A note on the recipe: southbrooklypost published the version below in 2011–prior to the official Four and Twenty cookbook that came out late last year. The recipe seems to have changed over time. You can find the newer version here. The ingredients are slightly different, and there’s no need to blind bake the crust. I’ve always had success with the original, so I’m sticking to it. But I bet you’d be fine trying either.
Salty Honey Pie
By Melissa and Emily Elsen, compliments of southbrooklynpost
Makes one 9-inch custard pie.
Preheat oven to 350F.
Have prepared one (cooled) pre-baked pie shell of your choice. We use an all butter crust.
1/2 c butter melted
3/4 c white sugar
2 Tbsp white cornmeal (Note: I used yellow cornmeal)
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 c honey
1/2 c cream (Note: I used 2% milk)
2 tsp white vinegar
1 tsp vanilla paste (Note: I used vanilla extract)
1 or 2 Tbsp flake sea salt for finishing (Maldon is a good choice)
All of the mixing can be done by hand, or with an electric mixer.
Melt butter and combine with the sugar, salt and cornmeal to make a thick paste. Add the honey, vanilla and vinegar and mix together.
Fold in the eggs, add the cream and blend.
Pour the filling into a pre-baked pie shell and bake at 350 F for 45 to 60 minutes. The filling will puff up like a marshmallow and the center will be just slightly wobbly.
Once cooled (at least one hour), finish with a sprinkling of flake sea salt. Slice and serve with freshly whipped cream.
Note: The Elsens suggest their own pie crust recipe. I have always had luck with Rose Levy Berenbaum’s Basic Flaky Pie Crust from her amazing book The Pie and Pastry Bible. I’ve been baking with this tome since high school, and it delivers every time. Don’t be put off by the lengthy instructions; Rose knows what she’s doing, and the resulting crust is flaky, tender, and flavorful.