MACADAMIA

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When using fancy ingredients, you want to let them shine—not cover them up with lots of other ingredients. For example, caviar is best humbly served on a blini with crème fraîche, while a few thin shavings of truffle effortlessly dress up a simple pasta dish. Although not as pricy as caviar or truffles, macadamia nuts are a flavorful, high-end ingredient that needs no grand frills or flourishes. These buttery nuts shine in this pie, accented with a few wisps of nutmeg and dark rum for a luxurious delight.

MAKES ONE 9-INCH PIE

WHAT YOU NEED

Pie dough for a Standard Single Crust (this page)  

9-inch standard pie plate 

Instant-read thermometer 

Pie crust shield or foil (see this page) 

Piping bag (see this page) fitted with a Wilton #1M or other large star piping tip (optional) 

INGREDIENTVOLUMEWEIGHT (STAN


DARD)WEIGHT (METRIC)


FRANGIPANE

Raw macadamia nuts1⅓ cups7 ounces200 grams


Granulated sugar½ cup3.5 ounces100 grams


Unsalted butter, at room temperature3 tablespoons1.5 ounces43 grams


Egg1 large

Dark rum1 tablespo

on0.45 ounce13 grams


Ground nutmeg1 teaspoon


All-purpose flour1 tablespoon0.3 ounce9 grams


Salt¼ teaspoon

CINNAMON SUGAR MERINGUE TOPPING

Egg whites3 large

Light brown sugar, lightly packed⅔ cup4.65 ounces133 grams

Salt⅛ teaspoon

Vanilla extract½ teaspoon


Ground cinnamon½ teaspoon


Raw macadamia nutsabout 121 ounce28 grams


PARTIALLY BLIND-BAKE THE CRUST: Follow the instructions on this page. The pie will bake longer after the filling is added, so it should not be completely browned at this point. Remove the pie dish from the oven, set it on a wire cooling rack, and remove the foil or parchment and pie weights. Keep the oven at 350°F. 

MAKE THE FRANGIPANE: Spread the nuts on a baking sheet and lightly toast them in the oven, 6 to 9 minutes. Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool slightly for 5 minutes. Place half the macadamia nuts into the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times, until the nuts are mostly chopped. Add the granulated sugar and continue to pulse until the nuts are finely ground. Add the butter, egg, rum, nutmeg, flour, and salt and process until evenly combined. Add the remaining nuts to the filling mixture and pulse once or twice until they are just incorporated into the mixture. 

FILL THE CRUST AND BAKE: Place a pie crust shield on the pie to protect the edges from drips and pour the mixture into the warm pie shell. Place the pie in the oven on the middle rack and bake until it is puffed and browned, and no longer jiggles when jostled, about 15 minutes. Remove the pie from the oven and immediately start preparing the meringue topping. 

MAKE THE CINNAMON SUGAR MERINGUE TOPPING: Combine the egg whites, brown sugar, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer. Place the bowl over a pot of simmering water to create a water bath. Cook the egg white mixture over the simmering water, whisking constantly until the temperature on an instant-read thermometer reaches 160°F. Transfer the bowl to a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat on medium-high until the meringue holds medium peaks, about 8 minutes. Beat in the vanilla and cinnamon. Spread or decoratively pipe the meringue over the still warm surface of the pie. 

DECORATE THE PIE: Carefully slice the raw macadamia nuts into approximate quarters. Try to avoid generating too much nut dust. Sprinkle the large chunks of chopped macadamia nuts on top of the pie, leaving the dust behind—which would burn if you used it. Place the pie back in the oven on the middle rack for 5 minutes. Now turn the broiler on high for 20 seconds to 1 minute. Do not take your eyes off the pie! The intensity of broilers varies, and what takes ours 45 seconds could take yours 20 seconds. Remove the pie when the meringue and nuts just start to brown slightly and cool the pie completely at room temperature before serving. (Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator up to 2 days.)

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