World Famous Kentucky Horse Race Whose Name Rhymes with “Herbie” Pie Recipe

This recipe for the pie-that-shall-be-nameless is based on a clipping from the May 7th, 1973 edition of the Louisville Courier Journal. I changed the fat from butter to margarine and have changed the process quite a bit to ensure a smoother filling without curdling.

2 ounces (1/4 cup) butter
7 ounces (1 cup) brown sugar
3 eggs
8.5 ounces (3/4 cup) light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 ounces (1/2 cup) chocolate chips
2.5 ounces (1/2 cup) chopped walnuts (black walnuts if you can get them)
1 ounce (2 tablespoons) bourbon
1 8- or 9-inch unbaked pie crust

Prepare dough for 9″ single crust pie, roll it and lay it into a pie pan. Let it rest for a minimum of an hour in the refrigerator. Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Line the crust with greased tin foil and pour in pie weighs or dried beans. Bake the crust for 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Place the butter, sugar, corn syrup, salt and vanilla in a medium saucepan and set over medium-low heat. Beat the eggs and bourbon together in a small bowl. Mix the walnuts and chocolate chips together in another small bowl. Bring the sugar mixture to a simmer, stirring every so often, then remove it from the heat.

After 25 minutes, remove the crust from the oven and gently lift out the foil with the weights. Return the crust to the oven and bake a further 5-6 minutes. If the sugar mixture is cooling to the point that it’s starting form a crust, whisk it and give it another short shot of heat. DO NOT simmer it again…you want it around 140 degrees or so when the crust comes out.

When the crust is lightly browned remove it from the oven, which in the egg mixture and pour the filling into the hot shell. Sprinkle on the chocolate chips and nuts. Turn the heat down to 275 degrees, apply a pie shield to the pan if you have one (this will help keep the edge from over-baking) and bake the pie for 50-60 minutes until the center just stops sloshing when you jiggle the pan. The filling will continue to cook for the next ten minutes or so.

Cool the pie at least three hours before slicing and serving. Overnight is best.

12 thoughts on “World Famous Kentucky Horse Race Whose Name Rhymes with “Herbie” Pie Recipe”

  1. I don’t believe it! This looks as though it’s going to be the recipe for a tart my mother used to make (minus the bourbon) that I’ve been hunting for for AGES. Does it get a very thin crackly sort of skin on top of it?

    1. Indeed it does. All these sorts of nut pies we make in the States do. Very funny if it turns ut to be largely the same thing!

      – Joe

      1. Not that funny. It was something she learned to make at “Continental Cookery” classes back in the 60s. Included in Continental Cookery were things like Chicken Maryland (a keeper, we had it often) and Chilli Con Carne (went down the toilet, inedibly hot for our palates at the time). Don’t know about you, but here we usually think of “Continental” as being European – I guess the person in charge of that cookery class thought any old continent would do.

  2. My husband and I have hosted a Kentucky Derby party for the past two years – I think that this will get added to the menu!

  3. Well…looks like pecan pie with chocolate chips in it to me. …And bourbon with not nearly enough nuts… Aside from that, tell me something. I’ve been trying to figure out how to get the filling smooth, like a cream custard, but it always ends up curdled. I feel like I’ve tried everything. What’s the deal with this type of pie not having a smooth filling? Too many eggs and not enough liquid? What?

  4. Real black walnuts?
    I haven’t seen them in stores for a long time. They are a real treat compared to english walnuts or whatever it is that comes in those bags now.
    I do remember really good black walnut ice cream, but that must have been 50 years ago.

  5. Anything resembling chess or pecan pie is okay by me. I tend to add a bit more bourbon than this recipe specifies.
    Hope you had an amazing time in NC. As a native North Carolinian, I still have a strong affection for it. The area around Asheville, Marshall, and Hot Springs is especially lovely.

  6. Hi Joe

    I wonder why you changed the name on the original post – did they bring the legal hammer down already?? I also noticed you removed the photo of the recipe. Is that for the same reason?

  7. I love you website. While following the instructions and recipe, this morning, I noticed that the recipe does not mention when to add the corn syrup, and the instructions do not mention when to add the butter (although it is pictured in the pan).

    Black walnuts are uniquely flavored. My mom used to put them in tomato preserves, although I never found a taste for that.

    Thanks again.

    1. Thanks so much Mary Lou!

      I’m sorry about the error. I’ve fixed it now, the corn syrup goes into the sugar mixture as does the butter…all in the same pan! I fixed the recipe and the tutorial post.

      Thanks for the help!

      – Joe

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