The Book on Pie

Daytime

Pumpkin Pie

MAKES: ONE 9-INCH/23-CM PIE

DIFFICULTY: MEDIUM

Because pumpkin pie had never been one of my favorites, I set out to make a recipe I truly loved for this book, and I ended up with several contenders! This one is the most classic; see the variation below for a slightly creamier version that is also delicious. I like it best topped with whipped cream, or a pile of fat toasted marshmallows (see below).

170 g / 3 large eggs

106 g / 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

99 g / 1/2 cup granulated sugar

5 g / 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

439 g / 2 cups canned pumpkin puree

6 g / 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

3 g / 1 teaspoon ground ginger

2 g / 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

Scant 1 g / 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

2 g / 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

115 g / 1/2 cup half-and-half

One 9-inch / 23-cm pie crust (see below), parbaked, brushed with egg wash, and cooled completely (see page 43)

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F / 190°C with a rack in the center (preferably with a Baking Steel or stone on it).
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and vanilla together until well combined. Add the pumpkin puree, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, and salt and whisk until well combined. Add the half-and-half and whisk well to combine.
  3. Place the parbaked crust on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Pour the filling into the crust. Transfer to the oven and bake until the custard appears set around the edges (it may still be a bit jiggly in the center—that’s OK), 35 to 40 minutes. Cool completely, then refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.
  4. When ready to serve, spread or pipe the whipped cream onto the surface of the pie. Slice and serve.

VARIATION

PUMPKIN MASCARPONE PIE: Replace the half-and-half with 226 g / 8 ounces mascarpone cheese; whisk well to combine.

MAKE AHEAD AND STORAGE

The pie can be made up to 24 hours ahead and refrigerated until ready to serve. Add the whipped cream topping just before serving.

RECOMMENDED CRUSTS

  • Cardamom Lemon Pie Dough (page 52)
  • Oatmeal Press-In Cookie Crust (page 64)
  • Pumpkin Spice Pie Dough (page 52)

RECOMMENDED FINISHES

Mile-High Batch of Classic Whipped Cream or Mascarpone Whipped Cream (page 111)

OTHER OPTIONS

Skip the whipped cream and top with Meringue Topping (page 118), or serve with Whipped Cream Sauce (page 112)

All-Buttah Pie Dough

MAKES: ONE 9-INCH / 23-CM CRUST

DIFFICULTY: MEDIUM

This is my go-to pie dough: all buttah, all the time. Butter can be harder for beginners to work with, because it has a lower melting point than fats such as shortening, but the flavor can’t be beat. And once you know how to handle the dough, it’s easy. The key? Colder is always better when pie dough is involved. When in doubt, toss everything (the ingredients, the bowl, and maybe even the half-mixed dough) into the fridge before proceeding. The recipe can easily be increased to make up to a quadruple batch of dough (see Making Big Batches using a Stand Mixer, page 30).

150 g / 11/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 g / 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

113 g / 4 ounces / 8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch / 13-mm cubes

60 g / 1/4 cup ice water, plus more as needed

  1. Prepare the dough using your desired mixing method (see page 27).
  2. Form the dough into a disk and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using. This dough is best baked at 425°F / 220°C. Parbake (see page 43), blind-bake (see page 46), or fill and bake as directed in the recipe of your choice.

VARIATION

CHOCOLATE ALL-BUTTAH PIE DOUGH: Replace 30 g / 1/4 cup of the all-purpose flour with 28 g / 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (any kind, but dark or black cocoa powder makes a particularly intense crust; see Resources, page 345). Take care not to overbake the crust—look for a dry, matte appearance all over.

MAKE AHEAD AND STORAGE

The tightly wrapped disk of dough can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. Wrapped in plastic wrap and then in aluminum foil, the dough can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before using.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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