Along with the cranberry salad I made for my family's Thanksgiving, I made this pie. I've actually never had pumpkin pie before, so I wasn't sure what I was getting into. But Nina Planck, whom I mentioned here (have you read her book yet???), posted the recipe to her facebook page so I thought I'd give it a try, especially because I knew it would be all real ingredients. I hated the idea of letting everything I believe about real food go just because it's a holiday. Some exceptions here and there are fine (all things in moderation) but I didn't want to blow it out.
When I served the pie, my brother-in-law was the only one who was really excited about it. He asked for a big piece. He said pumpkin pie was one of his favorite desserts so he was thrilled with the dessert choice. Everyone else was pretty apathetic about it, except my uncle who specifically asked for a very small piece. I cut the pie into ten pieces, so the pieces were relatively small. Not tiny but not huge. When I gave my uncle his piece he said "this isn't small." I responded that I was glad to cut it in half for him and he said "no, I don't mind eating just a few bites, I just didn't want to be rude and leave uneaten pie." When he cleaned his plate I was a bit surprised but didn't really think anything of it.
The rest of the table said that it was good. I agreed. My brother-in-law loved it, which was a good sign me since he knows his pumpkin pie. A few minutes after we left the table my uncle confessed: "I don't like pumpkin pie. At all. That's why I asked for a very small piece. But it was so delicious, I surprised myself by eating the entire piece!"
So the recipe experiment was a success! And on top of the satisfaction of knowing everyone at the table loved it -- it's easy peasy to make. I didn't meant to sign up for two easy recipes (but I'm secretly glad I did!). Easy + delicious = win win.
As an aside: I made my own pie crust (also v. easy -- see recipe below) but Whole Foods has a whole wheat crust that you might get if you'd prefer to leave a step out.
1.5 cups white whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup melted butter, preferably unsalted
2 tablespoons milk
1 can (16 ounces) organic pumpkin
3/4 cup honey
1/2 cup milk (preferably raw)
1/4 cup whipping (heavy) cream
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Preheat oven to 400.
Mix together crust ingredients thoroughly including flour, salt, butter, and milk. Squeeze the dough into a ball to make sure there is enough moisture.
If it crumbles into pieces too easily then add another splash of milk. Shape the crust by thinning it out with your fingers/hands until the pie dish is evenly covered (pictured above). Feel free to make the edges look “fancy." Or maybe not so fancy (see my attempt at fancy below).
Beat eggs slightly in large bowl, using hand beater. Beat in remaining ingredients. Pour into crust-lined pie plate. Cover edge with 2- to 3-inch strip of aluminum foil to prevent excessive browning (remove foil during last 15 minutes of baking.)
Bake 50 to 55 minutes or until toothpick inserted 1 inch from edge comes out clean. Cool 15 minutes. Refrigerate until chilled. Serve with sweetened whipped cream sprinkled with nutmeg if desired. Refrigerate any remaining pie.
(Crust recipe from www.100daysofrealfood.com, Filling recipe from www.tablespoon.com)