Thursday, November 5, 2009

Pumpkin Pie (from scratch?)

After a two week long hiatus of the cake club I am back. Several weeks ago I decided to undertake the task of making a pumpkin pie from scratch, as in from a pumpkin. You are supposed to use a pie pumpkin which is a smaller, sweeter pumpkin, primarily if not solely used for making pumpkin pies. I chose to make my pie this week which as you know is the week
after Halloween and despite it still be Autumn there are no pie pumpkins to be had. NONE. You would think people would still be enjoying pies the entire season and surely for Thanksgiving?! Do they take the pies away after Halloween and then bring them back again for Thanksgiving? I do not know, all I know is that I had to use a can of already cooked and pureed pumpkin. Fail. Although the rest of the pie is made form scratch, so it's not so much like cheating. I really wanted to make it from a pumpkin though. Oh well. Perhaps in a couple weeks?? Crazy grocery store. 

I made my crust the night before to save on time (great trick, it freezes and refrigerates amazingly well) and rolled it out and filled it the next night. The pie filling is always really strange to me because it's so liquidy. I always think, this is never going to gel and become firm. No way. Somehow it always does. Anyway, I was using a slightly shallower pie pan and didn't want to fill it up to the point of it was spilling all over the place when I moved it from counter to oven so I just put in enough to reach the lip and then used the leftover pie dough to make some little crusts to put in ramekins. I filled the ramekins with my leftover filling and baked the pie and little pies all together. I even had leftover dough after that and made schnittchens (had to). German tradition (or maybe just Schroeter tradition?) of taking the left over scraps of dough (schnittchen means "scrap" in German), rolling it out, spreading some butter over it, sprinkling some cinnamon and sugar, rolling them up and cutting them into little cinnamon rolls if you will. Delicious and a great way to use all of the dough. Plus, it always reminds me of my Grandpa, it's a kind of offering to him. I think he likes it. 

After about thirty minutes of baking I cut out a few leaves and acorns from the leftover leftover dough and placed them on top of my pies. Very cute. It's the little things. 

I read a recipe somewhere to make whipped cream with maple syrup to go with it and I got to say this is the best idea ever. Due to not wanting to bring whipping cream, beaters, and maple syrup to work and whipping it on my desk for group meeting, I decided to not try this delicious add-on but please do, I'm sure it's amazing! 

I would give you a recipe for the pumpkin pie but really, just use the Libby's Famous Pumpkin Pie recipe. It's the best. 

Oh but instead of using Libby's Pumpkin Puree I used an organic pumpkin puree. Just doing my part. Good for you and good for the earth! 

Photos by Collin Monda

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