Makes 6 to 8 servings
Like all good Thanksgiving cooks, I make pumpkin pie for the holiday. But I also make it throughout the fall and winter for no other reason than that it is so good. As all pumpkin pies should be, this one is slip-through-your-teeth smooth and lavishly rich and creamy, and it is also spiced like eggnog and spiked with dark rum. On Turkey Day, I make this pie as a pie, but at other times I pour the filling into a fluted tart shell—just changing the shape transforms the dessert from a homey all-American classic into a classy dinner-party finisher. You'll have filling left over if you make a tart rather than a pie—use it to make mini-tartlets; bake the minis at 400 degrees F for 10 to 15 minutes.
1 9-inch single crust made with Good for Almost Everything Dough (see book), partially baked and cooled, or one 9-inch tart shell made with Sweet Tart Dough, partially baked and cooled
2 cups canned unsweetened pumpkin puree
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup (packed) light brown sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Lightly whipped lightly sweetened cream, for topping
1-1/2 cups heavy cream
1/3 cup sour cream
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1-1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
Pinch of ground cloves
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Pinch of salt
3 tablespoons dark rum
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Getting Ready: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat and put the pie plate (or tart pan) on it.
Put all of the filling ingredients in a food processor and process for 2 minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice. Alternatively, you can whisk the ingredients together vigorously in a mixing bowl. Rap the work bowl or mixing bowl against the counter to burst any surface bubbles, and pour the filling into the crust.
Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees F and continue to bake for 35 to 45 minutes longer (20 to 25 minutes for a tart), or until a knife inserted close to the center comes out clean. If you don't want to create a slash in your masterpiece, tap the pan gently—if the custard doesn't jiggle, or only jiggles a teensy bit in the very center, it's done. Transfer the pie (or tart) to a rack and cool to room temperature.
Serving: Pumpkin pie and whipped cream are naturals, and if you've tested the pie's doneness with a knife, you might want to serve the whipped cream as a cover-up. I like this pie chilled, but others are fans of it at room temperature—decide for yourself.
Storing: Like most pies, this one is best served the day it is made. However, you can make the pie early in the day and keep it refrigerated until needed.
Pumpkin-Banana Pie: Years ago I had a very unusual and lovely variation on this pie, created by the legendary Provençal chef Roger Vergé, and I've been making it from time to time ever since. Line the bottom of the pie or tart shell with sliced bananas (cut them on the bias and don't make them too thin—a scant 1/4 inch is good) and pour the custard over the fruit; bake as above.
From My Home to Yours
by Dorie Greenspan
Photographs by Alan Richardson
Houghton Mifflin Company
Full-color, 528 pages, $40.00
Recipe reprinted by permission.
This page created November 2006
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