Monday, November 25, 2013

ARoW: Grandmama's Pumpkin Pie

Even though I recently said that I’d rather delay my pumpkin pie gratification until Thanksgiving Day itself, I really had hoped to make Grandmama’s Pumpkin Pie last week, just so I could post some better photos of it here. Sure it’s pumpkin pie and so it looks like pumpkin pie, but this is such a delicious and fabulously traditional recipe that it deserves some better photographic representation.

Alas, I didn’t get a chance to make it, and now I’m fretting a bit, wondering when I’m going to get a chance to make it at all. I have to work Thanksgiving Day, and live too far from the family celebrations, so I won’t be cooking, or even eating, a traditional Thanksgiving dinner (although I have some plans in the works for a Charlie Brown-style meal on Thursday and hope to cook turkey, etc. for my husband and I on Saturday). Whatever happens, though, I’m determined to celebrate somehow with Grandmama’s Pumpkin Pie, even if it’s almost Christmas.

Here are a few other recipes from The Messy Apron Archives that might go well on a Thanksgiving table:
Vegetarian Main Dishes:
Beans and Rice Stuffed Squash
Quinoa Stuffed Squash
Winter Squash Risotto
Butternut Squash Pie with Feta and Mint
Winter Squash and Leek Empanadas with Sage
Winter Vegetable Galettes with Cheddar, Mustard and Caramelized Onions

Side Dishes and Salads:
Carrots with Ketchup-Ginger Dressing
Cranberry Sauce
Cranberry Sauce with Persimmons and Spice
Roasted Cauliflower, Chickpeas and Olives
Roasted Vegetables
Wilted Savoy Cabbage with Warm Walnut-Butter Vinaigrette
Barley and Wild Rice Salad with Cranberry Vinaigrette
Brown Rice Salad with Walnuts, Pears and Blue Cheese
Wheat Berry Salad with Roasted Vegetables and Maple Walnut Vinaigrette
Arugula Salad with Squash and Lentils
Spinach Salad with Apples and Maple Walnut Vinaigrette
Radish and Carrot Slaw with Zesty Citrus Dressing
Shaved Vegetable Salad with Cider-Sage Vinaigrette

Desserts (if you dare to deviate from the traditional pumpkin pie):
Applesauce and Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Beet and Orange Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes
Apple and Cranberry Crisp
Ginger Spice Ice Cream
Apple Turnovers with Dried Fruit
Cranberry Bars
Cranberry Swirl Cheesecake with Chocolate Crust

And if you have leftover turkey:
Turkey Salad with Sherry Vinegar and Smoked Paprika
Chicken and Vegetable Tetrazzini (replace the chicken with leftover turkey and skip the cooking step)

Grandmama's Pumpkin Pie
It is likely that you will have more filling than you can easily fit into the pie shell. If so, pour the excess in a ramekin and bake it alongside the pie. It will take less time than the pie to fully bake.

If you don’t have Pumpkin Pie Spice on hand, replace it in this recipe with ¾ teaspoon cinnamon, ½ teaspoon ground allspice, ¼ teaspoon ground ginger, ¼ teaspoon ground cloves, and ¼ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg

1 ½ cups milk

3 tablespoons (about 1 ½ ounces) butter
3 eggs
¾ cup (about 5 ½ ounces) sugar
15 ounces pumpkin puree (canned or homemade)

2 teaspoons Pumpkin Pie Spice
1 unbaked pie crust, arranged in a pie pan
whipped cream for serving

1. Preheat oven to 450 F. Heat milk in a medium size sauce pan over medium heat until it reaches 180 F. This is just before the milk boils. (Do not bring all the way to a boil.)

2. Remove the milk from the heat and add the butter. Stir to melt the butter and set aside to cool somewhat.

3. Meanwhile, beat the eggs and the sugar together in a large bowl until they are fluffy and pale. Add the pumpkin and the spices and whisk together. Slowly add the milk mixture and whisk until very well combined.

4. Place the crust in the pan on a large baking sheet. (This will make the pie much easier to maneuver.) Pour the filling into the prepared, unbaked pie crust. Reserve any filling that does not fit and bake it separately in a ramekin for a treat for the cook.

5. Cover the exposed edges of the pie crust with strips of aluminum foil. Carefully transfer the baking sheet with the pie into the 450 F oven and bake for 20 minutes.

6. Reduce the oven heat to 350 F. Bake 15 minutes. Remove the foil from the crust. Bake an additional 15 to 25 minutes. The crust should be golden brown and the center of the pie should wobble just a little when the pie is very gently shaken. Remove from the oven and cool completely before slicing. Serve with whipped cream.

Makes 8 to 10 servings. Eat leftovers within a couple days. Recipe is easily doubled to make two pies.

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