I've been racking my brain for weeks trying to come up with a pie to make for the holidays. Since I already made my earl grey pie and chocolate covered strawberry pie a handful of times now, I wanted something a little different. So I turned to my next favorite pie, buttermilk custard pie, and decided to give it a festive spin. And what could be more festive than adding butterscotch to the mix? Butterscotch just sounds like Christmas to me so I put the two together and ended up with this salted butterscotch buttermilk pie. Without being too sweet like most butterscotch desserts, this pie definitely hit the spot. A new holiday pie to add to the list!
Salted Butterscotch Buttermilk Pie
- 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour (200 grams)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup cold butter, cut into small chunks (113 grams)
- 3-4 tablespoon ice cold water
- 1 egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water
- ½ cup brown sugar (100 grams)
- 1 ½ tablespoon water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup heavy cream (125 ml)
- ¼ cup butter, cut into chunks (56 grams)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 tablespoon bourbon
- 3 large eggs
- ½ cup granulated sugar (100 grams)
- 3 tablespoon cornstarch (26 grams)
- 1 cup buttermilk (250 ml)
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- Make the pie crust. Combine the flour with the salt. Cut in the butter using a pastry cutter or food processor, mixing until it resembles coarse crumbs. Add the ice-cold water one tablespoon at a time, mixing just until the dough comes together. Shape into a disc and wrap the dough in plastic wrap. Chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Dust a clean work counter with flour. Remove the dough from the fridge and roll it out to about a 12-inch circle. Transfer the crust to a pie pan, trim the excess dough, and crimp the edges. Use a fork to poke holes in the bottom of the crust. Beat together the egg yolk with water and brush the egg wash on the bottom crust. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool completely.
- Meanwhile, make the butterscotch. Combine the brown sugar with water and salt in a heavy bottom saucepot. Bring to a boil over medium heat and continue to cook for 2 minutes. Add the heavy cream and simmer for another minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and whisk in the butter, vanilla, and bourbon. Let cool slightly.
- Prepare the filling. Whisk the eggs until frothy, about 1 minute. Add the sugar and cornstarch and whisk until smooth. Add the buttermilk, nutmeg, and butterscotch, mixing until well combined. Pour the filling in the pie crust and bake the pie for 40-60 minutes or until the pie is set and no longer jiggly. Remove from the oven and let cool completely on a wire rack.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
As far as pies go, I have to say this one is my easiest recipe. I have this habit of adding more than one element to the dessert to make them extra unique, which in turn requires more time and effort. This time I wanted to highlight just the butterscotch and buttermilk. Keeping it simple sometimes is good, right?
To make the salted butterscotch buttermilk pie, first, make the crust. You can also use the store-bought crust. This recipe is meant for a deep-dish pie so if you're using a storebought one, you may have enough filling for two pies.
To prevent the crust from puffing up and getting soggy, we're going to prick the bottom with a fork and brush it with egg wash. The egg wash acts as a shield, protecting the crust and prevent it from getting soggy from the filling. Bake the crust for 10 minutes and let it cool completely on a wire rack.
While the crust is cooling, make the butterscotch. Butterscotch is basically a caramel but with the addition of alcohol. I used bourbon but you can also use rum or whiskey. Make the sauce and let it cool until it's easy to handle.
Now on to making the filling. The custard is a fairly basic custard except that we're going to use buttermilk instead of milk. Add the cooled butterscotch sauce at the end, whisking until combined. If you add hot butterscotch sauce to the egg mixture, it can cook the eggs. Pour the filling into the prepared crust and bake the pie for 40-50 minutes or until the pie has set.
To ensure that the pie doesn't crack, you can cool the pie in the oven with the door cracked open and the oven turned off. Make sure to cool the pie completely before serving since the custard is still cooking.
What's great about this salted butterscotch buttermilk pie is that it's not overly sweet like other butterscotch desserts. The balance is perfect with just a hint of alcohol and salt. Top the pie with a dollop of whipped cream or just as is, it's delicious either way!
For more pie inspiration check out these spiced apple pear pie pockets!
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