Pumpkin pie must be the original and most carefully examined pie ever thanks to that evergreen festival of Thanksgiving.
Pumpkins always come into their own about this time of year and are so strongly associated with Autumn in the USA. Over in Oregon my sister will regularly post pictures of that all important pumpkin to be carved out. In the UK we will have grown quite a few and as the climate warms up we are likely to grow even more. For all you gardeners out there, I have given a few tips on how to get some good sized pumpkins and other squashes for that matter. If you love a pumpkin pie then why not try this particular recipe.
The decoration is always optional but it does add to the splendour. You can add a few cranberries and some cut-out shapes of leaves.
Here is the version I use and grew up with.
For the pastry:
- 200g plain flour
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon (optional)
- 125g (4oz) butter
- 2 tbsp icing sugar
For the filling:
- 180g (6oz) caster sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- ½ tsp mixed spice
- 3 eggs
- 1 x 425g can solid pack pumpkin or 450g diced pumpkin, cooked and sieved
- 200ml double cream
For the topping:
- 200ml (1/3pt) double cream
- 1 orange, zested
- freshly grated nutmeg
- Heat the oven to gas 7/220°C/430ºF/fan 200°C.
- To make the pastry, mix together the flour and the cinnamon, if using. Rub in the butter and stir in the icing sugar. Add enough water (about 7 tsp) to mix to a stiff dough.
- Roll out the pastry until it is large enough to line a 23cm x 23cm x 5cm deep pie dish. Pinch the edge of the pastry. Roll out any trimmings and, using a small cutter, stamp out leaf shapes. Attach to the rim of the pastry using a little water. Chill for 15 minutes.
- Line the pastry with foil and fill with baking beans. Bake blind for 8 minutes. Remove the foil and beans and return to the oven for 2-3 minutes.
- Reduce the oven temperature to gas 3, 150°C, fan 130°C. To make the filling, put the pumpkin and all other filling ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Pour into the pastry case and bake in the oven for about 1 hour until the filling is set.
- Remove and serve after about 20 minutes. Just leave to cool on a wire rack.
- You can either serve this warm or just cool for an hour. Some chefs like to refrigerate and serve chilled.
- Whatever the temperature, whisk the cream until thick. Spoon onto the pie and scatter over the orange zest and nutmeg.
Revised recipe from 19th November 2019.