It is pumpkin pie season. So in honour of this, I decide to share a video about the proper way to make the filling and bake the pie. This video discusses a number of ingredient options including egg-free and dairy-free so it is suitable for any preferences you may have. The biggest issue with pumpkin pie is to prevent the pastry from becoming soggy. There are a couple of tips to prevent this so you get a perfect pie every time. The full recipe is below. This is a bit longer than I intended but once I got started, I apparently had a lot to say about making pumpkin pie. Who knew? Enjoy!
Use 1/2 recipe Spelt Shortcrust Pastry Dough recipe rolled in a 9″ pie shell, chilled (recipe below)
1 14-oz (398 ml) pure canned organic pumpkin or 2 cups pumpkin puree**
1 cup organic yellow brown sugar*
1/2 cup evaporated milk or 1/2 cup light coconut milk
1/2 cup whipping cream or 18% or 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp allspice or dried ginger (optional)
1 tsp sea salt
1 egg white
* If you cannot find organic yellow brown sugar then use a half cup sucanat mixed with half cup evaporated can sugar also known as as raw sugar.
** Pumpkin purée: Look for small cooking “pie pumpkins” which are a special variety different from Halloween pumpkins and have a texture similar to a Hubbard squash. You can also use a Hubbard squash or my favorite, a 50/50 combination of pie pumpkin and Hubbard squash.
To cook the pumpkin: Cut the pumpkin in half and place both halves into a rectangular baking dish. Fill the baking dish with water about 1/3″ deep. Cover the pumpkins with either aluminum foil or a plate wider in diameter than the pumpkin. Bake for about one hour or until the insides are very soft. Remove from the oven and let cool. Scoop out the seeds. These can be rinsed off, sprinkled lightly with sea salt or herbs and roasted for a nice snack. Once the seeds have been removed, scoop out the pumpkin. Place two cups cooked pumpkin in a food processor or blender and puree. If the pumpkin is a little dry, you may want to add a little of the liquid from the pie recipe. One small pie pumpkin may not yield two cups of puree so two pumpkins will probably be required to make a pie. Any excess can be frozen and used for soup or muffins. Mix all the ingredients (except the egg white) together and whisk until smooth. Brush the inside of the pie shell with egg white. Pour pumpkin filling into the pie shell. Bake at 400 degrees F for 20 minutes until the pastry is somewhat golden. Lower the temperature to 325 degrees F and bake for another 30 minutes or until the filing is coked and set (will be be jiggle but not liquid-y)
Let cool and serve while still slightly warm. Serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. For a dairy free option: Coconut Ice Cream
Tip: It is very difficult to cook the bottom of pumpkin pie and prevent sogginess. The egg white provides a bit of a barrier and chilling allows the pie shell to be less absorbent, giving the oven more time to cook it before the filling absorbs into it. For best results, use a pie pan that heats up well, such as glass, china or carbon steel.
Shortcrust Pastry Dough
Makes two 9″ pie crusts or one double crust
6 oz (3/4 cup) cold butter, or coconut oil*, cut into pieces
2 tbsp coconut oil*
2 1/2 cups spelt flour
1/8 tsp sea salt
1 egg yolk
2–3 tbsp water
Place butter, coconut oil, spelt flour and salt into a food processor and process until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Do not over process to the point where the mixture becomes a ball. Transfer to a bowl and add egg yolk and water. Mix together gently, using a pressing, squeezing motion. Chill for half an hour. Do not knead or the dough will become tough. When re-rolling dough, mix dough already rolled with fresh dough in a 50/50 ratio.
* Measure out coconut oil and refrigerate before cutting into pieces.
1 cup whole bean flour or chickpea flour
2/3 cup brown rice flour
1 1/2 tsp sucanat
1/2 cup butter, chilled, cut into cubes or chilled coconut oil, cut into pieces
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
2 tsp coconut oil
1 egg or choice of egg replacer*
2 tbsp milk (coconut, almond, rice, or soy can also be used)
Place flours, sucanat, butter, coconut oil, salt and baking powder in a food processor and process until the mixture is the consistency of bread crumbs. Transfer to a bowl. Mix milk and egg together and add it to the flour mixture. Using clean hands, squish mixture through the fingers until it can be formed into a ball. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
* 2 tsp chia, salba, or salvia hispanica with 2 tbsp water work best as an egg replacement.
It works so well, I think it may be better than using the egg.