Saturday, April 29, 2006

Orange-Spice Pumpkin Pie

Having tried pumkin pie recipes on and off over the years, I was less than enthused by the results. All that changed in 2004, when my mother-in-law sent me the following wonderful recipe. Yum.

Orange-Spice Pumpkin Pie

Pie crust dough for shell
2 T finely chopped crystallized ginger (Note: this means finely chopped, or you'll bit into little chunks if you don't strain the mixture)
1-15 oz can pure pumpkin
1 t ground cinnamon
1 cups packed brown sugar
1 t grated orange peel
3 large eggs
¼ t ground nutmeg
1¼ cups heavy whipping cream
¼ t salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Roll out dough on lightly floured surface to 12”round. Transfer to 9” diameter glass pie dish. Fold overhang under and crimp decoratively. Pierce dough all over w/fork. Freeze 15 minutes. Line crust with foil, and fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake until sides are set, about 12 minutes. Remove foil and beans. Bake until crust begins to color, pressing with the back of a fork if the crust bubbles, about 5 minutes longer. Transfer to rack.

Reduce temperature to 350 degrees.

Whisk pumpkin and brown sugar in medium bowl to blend. Add all remaining ingredients and whisk until blended. Pour filling into crust. Bake pie until filling is set in center, about 1 hour. Transfer pie to rack, cool 30 minutes. Chill uncovered until cold, at least 3 hours. (Can be made 1 day ahead.) Cover and keep chilled.

Notes: I've also made this pie using half-and-half instead of whipping cream, and it still turned out wonderful, just a bit lighter, with a cleaner mouth feel.

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