Sunday, November 24, 2013

Thanksgiving Special: Pumpkin Pie

A light, creamy pumpkin filling with a buttery, flaky crust makes for a perfect pumpkin pie.
Thanksgiving's right around the corner so what better way to celebrate the day than with your classic pun'kin pie recipe? 

We'll begin with our crust...

Ingredients: Pâte Brisée Pie Crust
8 tbsp (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter (freeze the butter at least 15 minutes)
1¼ cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp. salt
1½ tsp. sugar
3-4 tbsp. ice water
1. The trick to a flaky crust is the use of ice cold butter. You'll want to first cut the butter up into small cubes. Then add half of the cubes to a mixing bowl or a food processor alongside the salt and sugar. I used a mixing bowl and just combined the butter into the dry ingredients with the back of a fork. If you're using a food processor, pulse a few times until combined. Then add the rest of the butter and repeat.
2. This is the consistency you want. The mixture should be crumbly with small, pea-sized bits of butter throughout it.
3. At this point, add 1 tbsp. of water at a time—less is more! Press the mixture gently together until it looks like everything is beginning to stick to each other as in the picture above. Then flip the mixture onto a clean and smooth surface.
4. Keep pressing the dough together with the heel of your palm. Don't knead or handle the dough too much, otherwise your crust will be tough! The end result will be a disc of dough like the one in the picture above. Also, don't worry if your dough isn't smooth—the bits of butter will make your crust flaky and yummy. Now, wrap the dough in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least an hour.

Now onwards to the filling!

Ingredients: Pumpkin Pie Filling
2 eggs + 1 egg yolk
½ cup packed brown sugar
 cup white sugar
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
1½ cup heavy cream
2 cups pumpkin puree (the canned variety is fine! Just don't buy "pumpkin pie filling")
5. Preheat your oven to 425° F. Then in a mixing bowl combine the two sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pumpkin puree.
6. Beat your eggs and then add to the pumpkin mixture.
7. Next, add your cream. Stir well...
8. ...and you'll have something like this!

Now to put everything together!

9. Removing your disc of dough from the fridge, let it sit for about 10 minutes so that it will be easier to roll. When soft enough, roll the dough into a 12-inch circle of about 1/8 inch thickness. Then gently place your pie pan, and press against the sides neatly. Prick your pie like above with a fork so that there will be no weird bubbles in your crust when you're done baking.
10. Feel free to be creative with the edges of your pie! I wanted a more rustic looking pie so I just used the prongs of a fork to create indents in my crust. You can even make braided or scalloped edges if you're feeling adventurous. Then pour your filling into the pie crust and carefully place in your now 425° oven for 15 minutes. After the 15 minutes are up, you'll want to reduce your oven temperature to 350° F and bake for an additional 40-50 minutes. Then let cool for about an hour.
[*Optional: I topped the pie with a piece of dough that I cut into a leaf shape—I baked it separately in a microwave oven for a few minutes and then placed it on top of the pie after it cooled.] 
Yummmmmm.
Oh and here's a cross-section in case you were wondering. :D

I hoped you enjoyed this recipe. Look forward to more in the next couple days as we countdown to Turkey Day! 

Bon Appétit.

*Recipe for crust and pie filling adapted from Simply Recipes' "All Butter Crust for Sweet and Savory Pies (Pâte Brisée)" and "Suzanne's Old Fashioned Pumpkin Pie"recipes. She's great!

Writer: Princess
Photographer: Princess
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