T’is the season to eat pie!
I’ve done nothing for the last 4 years of studying international business if I haven’t learnt that we live in an increasingly interconnected, or ‘globalised’ world. This is largely attributed to significant leaps in the field of technology and communications including social networking and media. Where’s she going with this, you might ask.
My friends, I am talking about International Food Envy. It’s definitely a thing.
Here’s my hypothesis: increased contact with entities in other countries via social media has a direct, positive correlation with increased envy of foods in such countries.
I for one can definitely confess to having international food envy. I blame Instagram, I really do. From French pastries to Spanish paella, American burgers and sizzling Malaysian Satay, Instagram is flooded with images provided by avid foodies and the world’s best chefs. It is this envy that led to my desire for pumpkin pie – a result of countless images of thanksgiving feasts sent straight to the palm of my hand by family, friends and celebrities in North America.
The first time I tried pumpkin pie was at a work lunch last year and it was awesome, but I put aside my own greed and consumed only one small piece. Unfortunately at work events you usually have to share the food with colleagues. I think it would have been frowned upon if I had taken the remainder of the pie back to my desk. I did the right thing.
I decided to do some research and try making pumpkin pie at home. As it turns out, it is not that difficult. There are loads of American recipes, many of which use things like condensed milk, which I thought might be too sweet, and/or canned pumpkin puree, which is not readily available here. So here is a recipe I sorta chucked together based on all the other recipes I’d read. I ended up making two of these pies for Christmas day last year and it was a success. I’ve made it twice since and have taken some photos to share with you.
Firstly, get some butternut pumpkin and make a puree. I do this by cutting up half a pumpkin, roasting it, then blending it in a food processor.
Secondly, make the pie crust. This one is super simple. It should be crumbly like below but you should be able to smooth it and press it into the tin using a spoon.
Next, whip up your pie filling by whisking together all of the filling ingredients. Pour the filling in the pie crust and bake in the oven for about 40-45 minutes.
Let it cool then serve with a dollop of double cream and sprinkle with some extra ground cinnamon.
Easy as…pie. Hehe.
~ Recipe ~
- 1/2 butternut pumpkin (approx 500 grams)
- 125g unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
- 1 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1/4 tsp fine salt
- 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup (65 grams) light brown sugar
- 450-500 grams fresh pumpkin puree
- 3/4 cup (175 ml) thickened cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1/2 tsp salt
For the pumpkin puree:
- Preheat oven to 180°C.
- Cut half of a butternut pumpkin into large chunks (leave the skin on) and spread on a tray lined with baking paper.
- Roast for around 45 minutes, or until the pumpkin is tender when pierced with a fork/skewer then remove from the oven (leave it on to bake the pie!) and cool.
- Once cooled use a fork to scrape the tender pumpkin off the skin.
- Chuck it in a food processor and whiz until smooth. If it’s looking a little dry or pasty, add a little water, maybe 1 or two tablespoons.
For the crust:
- Stir the butter, sugar, and salt together in a medium bowl until evenly combined. Add the measured flour and stir until a soft dough forms.
- Sprinkle the dough in small clumps over the bottom of a 9-1/2-inch deep-dish pie plate. Using a cup/spoon/hand, evenly press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of the plate (flour the cup or your fingers occasionally to prevent sticking). Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
For the filling:
- Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease 4.5cm-deep, 23cm pie dish.
- Combine the pumpkin, cream, sugar, eggs, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and ginger in a bowl. Whisk until smooth. Pour over the crust. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until just set. Set aside to cool completely.
- Serve with a dollop of double cream and sprinkle with extra cinnamon.