Saturday, November 26, 2011

Pumpkin Pie…Made from a Pumpkin

This Thanksgiving I'm out of the States*, and canned pumpkin isn't available. What's a guy to do? Roast a pumpkin, of course.


I found a Sweet Grey pumpkin at the Market, sold as a 1kg half. Placed face-down in a baking pan (so that it steams itself with its own moisture), roasted at 180ºC in a forced fan oven for 30 or 40 minutes, until a knife easily slipped through the flesh from the outside.

Once roasted, the thin skin peeled off easily and I mashed the insides; yielded approximately 4 cups. I was concerned about the wateriness of the mash, but I shouldn't have been. I should have taken a picture of that. On to making the pie.

The Pie

I evaluated a few recipes for similarities. There seemed to be two families: evaporated milk with sugar, or sweetened condensed milk. They all agreed on eggs to make a custard filling. The final spice mix is also a source of debate. Here's where I landed. Makes 2 pies.

  • 4 cups roasted pumpkin mash
  • 2 cans (14oz/395g each) sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 eggs**
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon fresh minced ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon salt

**I added two egg yolks because I had them lying around. Don't know if it mattered.

Whisk all ingredients thoroughly. Pour into two pie shells. Place into a 220ºC/425ºF conventional oven / 160ºC forced fan oven. After ten minutes lower temperature to 175ºC/350ºF conventional / 120ºC forced fan. Cook for another 30 minutes and check for doneness with a toothpick in the center. Rotate a half turn once during cooking.

Let cool on a rack for an hour or two before refrigerating.


*Cooking in ovens where convection/forced fan is common, and where they're labeled in Celsius has been a challenge. As a general rule, I reduce the temperature or time by 30% and keep a close eye it. I usually lower the temperature and keep the time as written. 

Notes for next time: Is there a recipe that uses cream and not canned milk? Try this one with cream and honey.

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