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Easy-bake pumpkin pie
February 4, 2018, 10:16 pm
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Here is your guide to perfecting pumpkin pie from the sugar to spice ratio, to making homemade crust and serving in style.

A slice of pumpkin pie is the sweetest way to end a hearty meal. If you have never prepared a pie from scratch, our guide below is a great one to start with. All you need is a few simple kitchen utensils and ingredients. While the recipe at the end calls for canned pumpkin puree, you can always opt for your own filling with fresh pumpkin.

Crust: The beauty of preparing pumpkin pie is that it only calls for a one-crust pastry, which means you can prepare it in any number of ways from the pat-in-the-pan method to a traditionally rolled-out crust or even a store-bought pie crust.

Filling: Making the filling for pumpkin pie can be as simple as buying a can at the store. But you can exercise more control over the flavor of your pie by taking steps like making your own pumpkin pie spice or even roasting your own pumpkin to make puree. Below are the steps to preparing your own canned pumpkin puree.

Canned Pumpkin Puree: When making a filling using canned pumpkin, you will want to make sure to use canned pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie mix. The mix has sugar and spices already in it, so if you have purchased the pumpkin pie mix, follow the directions on the label.

The benefit of using canned pumpkin puree is its simplicity. You do not need to break down a pumpkin, roast it or puree it, instead you can grab your can opener and get to work.

Here is how:

·         Gather your equipment: a whisk or beaters, a medium bowl and a can opener.

·         Mix up a batch of pumpkin pie spice, using: 3 tbsp. ground cinnamon, 2 tsp. ground ginger, 2 tsp. ground nutmeg, 1 ½ tsp. ground allspice and 1 ½ tsp. ground cloves.

·         Then, simply beat the ingredients in a bowl. In addition to canned pumpkin, most recipes call for eggs, pumpkin pie spice, evaporated milk, sugar and salt.

Homemade Pumpkin Puree: Passionate scratch bakers may want to try preparing homemade pumpkin puree using a fresh pumpkin. Sugar pumpkins are sweet, as the name implies, and great for baking.

 

Here is how to prepare homemade pumpkin puree.

·         Preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius, and gather your equipment, including a sharp knife, cutting board, sheet pan and food processor. Make cleanup easier by lining your sheet pan with aluminum foil.

·         Begin by cutting the pumpkin in half, scooping out the seeds and discarding the stem. Then lay the squash flesh-side down on the sheet pan, rub the pumpkin with neutral oil (such as canola) and bake until tender. Bake time will depend on the size of the pumpkin, but it should take about 20 minutes per ¼ kilogram. 

·         After baking the pumpkin and allowing it to cool completely, cut away the skin and discard. Then, puree the pumpkin flesh in a food processor until smooth. You will need 1 ½ cups of pumpkin to make a 22cm pie.

·         Once you have the pureed pumpkin, you can follow any pumpkin pie recipe that uses canned pumpkin puree. It will just be a matter of mixing in the other filling ingredients.

 

Toppings: Once you have your pie prepared and ready to serve, it is time to do the toppings. You can do so with a dollop of homemade or store brought whipped cream. For homemade recipe, simply beat ¾ cup whipping cream and 2 tbsp. of sugar in a chilled medium bowl with an electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form.

You can also serve your pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for an extra-sweet touch.

Storage: One of the best things about pumpkin pie is that it can be prepared ahead of time. After you have baked it and let it cool, you can refrigerate it for up to three days. It is recommended to store the pie in an airtight container or with plastic wrap to best maintain its freshness.

Recipe:

Ingredients:

Pat-in-the-pan pastry:

·         1 1/3 cups all purpose flour

·         ½ tsp. salt

·         1/3 cup vegetable oil

·         2 tbsp. cold water

Filling:

·         2 eggs

·         ½ cup sugar

·         1 tsp. ground cinnamon

·         ½ tsp. salt

·         ½ tsp. ground ginger

·         1/8 tsp. ground cloves

·         1 can pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)

·         1 can evaporated milk

 

Sweetened whipped cream:

·         ¾ cup whipping cream

·         2 tbsp. sugar

Preparation:

Heat oven to 218 degrees Celsius. In medium bowl, mix flour, 1/2 tsp. salt and oil with a fork until all of the flour is moistened. Sprinkle with cold water, 1 tbsp. at a time, tossing with the fork until all of the water is absorbed. Shape pastry into a ball. Press in the bottom and up side of a 22cm glass pie plate.

In large bowl, beat eggs slightly with wire whisk or hand beater. Beat in 1/2 cup sugar, the cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. salt, ginger, cloves, pumpkin and milk.

To prevent spilling, place the pastry-lined pie plate on the oven rack before adding filling. Carefully pour the pumpkin filling into the pie plate. Bake for 15 minutes.

Reduce the oven temperature to 176 degrees Celsius. Bake for about another 45 minutes or until the knife inserted in center comes out clean. Place the pie on cooling rack. Cool completely, about 2 hours.

In a chilled medium bowl, beat whipping cream and 2 tbsp. sugar with electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form. Serve pie with whipped cream. Store in the refrigerator.

 

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