At a fall dinner party one of my girlfriends requested my pumpkin pie recipe. I got the recipe from my Mom, and we don’t take credit for the recipe; it comes from “the plaid cookbook” which is the edition of the Better Homes & Gardens cookbook my Mom acquired in the 1960s. I always make a homemade pie crust, and the one thing I did differently this last time was to add the entire can of pumpkin instead of perfectly following the original recipe.
Homemade Pie Crust
Sift together: 1 1/2 cups flour + 1/2 tsp salt.
Cut in: 1/2 cup shortening.
Add and toss lightly with a fork to mix dough: 4-5 Tbs cold water, adding and mixing 1 Tbs at a time.
Gather dough into a ball and knead a couple times. Do not over-handle the dough. Form dough into a disk; wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate to chill until ready to roll.
After mixing pie filling, roll dough onto floured board; roll out enough that dough will hang over edge of pie dish. Roll pie dough onto rolling pin and lift gently to transfer rolled dough to pie dish. For pumpkin pie, I prefer to use a quiche dish. Fold extra dough under to make a finished edge, and crimp edges to make a pretty crust.
Pumpkin Pie Filling
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin (or the entire 15 oz can)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cloves
3 slightly beaten eggs
1 1/4 c whole milk
6 oz evaporated milk
Thoroughly combine the pumpkin, sugar, salt and spices. Blend in eggs, milk and evaporated milk. Pour into unbaked pastry shell. Bake at 400* for 50 minutes, until knife inserted halfway between center and edge of pie comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.
Fresh Whipped Cream
Whip to thicken: 1 cup heavy whipping cream.
Whip in: 3 Tbs confectioners sugar + 1 tsp quality vanilla. (Tahitian vanilla is perfect.)
Whip a little more to thicken; be cautious not to over-beat the cream.
Pile over pie or serve on the side.
A couple notes: 1) When I was ready to learn how to make pie crust, my Mom came over and made it with me. It’s best if an experienced baker will help on the first try, and then it takes practice to make a pretty pie crust. 2) Pumpkin pie for breakfast is the best Thanksgiving or dinner party leftover!