This is normally the time of year when I try to score good deals on plane tickets home for Christmas and Thanksgiving.  You would think that buying this early in advance would be cheaper, and it is, but only slightly.   However, I’m just a few weeks away from moving within driving distance of my family.  Hallelujah!, no more flying home for the holidays.  I’m so ecstatic, I can’t stop thinking about it.

All that thinking about the holidays made me crave the pecan pie my Dad bakes every Thanksgiving and Christmas.  I hope this doesn’t embarrass him, but my Dad can bake one helluva pie.

Instead of baking a whole pecan pie, I made pecan tassies.  If you’ve never had a tassie, it’s a cookie cup with a custard filling.  It tastes like a bite of pecan pie encased in a rich cream cheese dough.

Pecan tassies are a classic Southern cookie to bake around the holidays, but what do you do when you crave them in April?  Do you make an entire batch of 4 dozen cookies?  No way!  Remember my little portion control problem?

I scaled these down to make only 8 cookies.

In case you’ve never made tassies, I did a little step-by-step of how to get a ball of dough into a cup shape:

After chilling your dough, divide it into 8 balls

Then, using your thumb, press the dough down into the cup and press the dough up the sides of your mini muffin pan.

You just made tassie cups!  Now, pour in your custard, bake 20 minutes, and enjoy!


Pecan Tassies

Pecan Tassies
Makes 8 cookies.

Ingredients

For the dough:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (plus extra for pan)
  • 2 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup flour

For the custard filling:

  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon whiskey (or vanilla)
  • 1/3 cup chopped, toasted pecans

Instructions

  1. First, make the dough: combine with an electric mixer the softened butter and cream cheese. Add the flour and beat until incorporated. It might not come together into a dough just yet; use your hands to clump it together into a ball. Wrap with plastic wrap and chill 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, grease 8 cups in a mini muffin pan with the extra butter, and preheat the oven to 350.
  3. Divide the dough into 8 equal-sized balls, then press the dough in the cups, as shown above.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, melted butter, brown sugar, whiskey and pecans. Divide this mixture evenly among the dough cups.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes. The pecan filling with puff up and rise above the edges of the dough. Yummy!