First bake of 2010: Butterscotch pecan tart, c/o Bon Appetit, Jan. 2010. I have long promised Steven a butter pecan cake, to follow from one of his favorite flavor profiles, and this was a sort of variation; he's professed it his #1 favorite new recipe so far. Skipped the scotch-spike and made regular, amazing, homemade whipped cream. Note: the original crust recipe is bullshit. Mine was dry, cracked in the oven, and smelled like burning. Dumped it and restarted with Deb's default sweet tart shell. Next time I'll add her warm butterscotch sauce for temperature/textural contrast.

Otherwise: the recipe blurb describes this as a cross between butterscotch pudding and pecan pie, and while I haven't made either, I'd file it under the latter. It's multi-step but not at all overwhelming; its worst aspect is all the waiting involved (chilling/freezing/parbaking the crust, cooling the butterscotch, room-temping/beating the egg whites, plus two hours cooling). Keep an eye on the pecans, as they brown in the oven rather spontaneously. The butterscotch is fucking intoxicating, especially with half a teaspoon of brandy added along with vanilla to the egg yolk mix. Next time I would rough chop only the pecans that line the shell, and keep the top layer whole for a better (less "rustic"?) presentation.

It's been about three years since I started baking at all: boxed mix and quick breads in the house on Edison. No longer a burner of break-and-bakes, I'm happy to say.