Roasted Pumpkin Pie
Have you ever made a real homemade pumpkin pie? One with a homemade crust and an actual pumpkin? I hadn’t, I had only grew up with the typical pumpkin pie crust in the aluminum plate, and the famous pumpkin puree in a can. While this way makes a very tasty pumpkin pie, it in no way compares to the real thing. I found out through research that the famous canned pumpkin puree is not really pumpkin at all, it is a hybrid squash that falls somewhere between a butternut squash and a pumpkin. For this pie, I used a small pumpkin that we had purchased from the church. They did not have pie pumpkins, ones that you would typically use. Pie pumpkins are much sweeter, and if you use a pie pumpkin, just use 1/2 cup sugar. For a regular pumpkin, I used a whole cup of sugar to sweeten it. I started out by roasting the pumpkin in the oven to bring out all the wonderful flavors. Then I scooped out the flesh and pureed it with an immersion blender. I made the pie crust dough with spiced rum, which paired wonderfully with the spiced pumpkin pie filling. I added a layer of nuts on the bottom of the pie for extra flavor and texture. Doing this also helps to ensure the bottom crust does not become soggy.
Roasted Pumpkin Pie
For the Crust:
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup cold butter, sliced in 1 inch pieces
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8-1/4 cup chilled spiced rum, or chilled water
For the Filling:
2 cups pumpkin puree
1/2-1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup cream
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cloves
You can substitute the above seasonings for 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/2 cup roasted walnuts or pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Start by preparing pumpkin. Cut in half. Remove seeds and stringy part of pumpkin. Sprinkle with salt and olive oil, and roast until pumpkin is very tender, about 30-40 minutes, depending on pumpkin size.
When pumpkin is done, remove from oven and let cool. Then scoop out flesh and add to a large mixing bowl and add about 1 cup of water. I used a submersion hand mixer to puree the pumpkin in the bowl, you could also use a food processor or blender. I had about 6 cups of flesh and added 1 cup of water, just enough to get the mixture movable.
Prepare crust in the food processor with the regular blade, or in a mixing bowl with a pastry knife or fork. I like the food processor, it is very easy.
Add flour, sugar, salt, and butter to food processor or large mixing bowl. Pulse in the food processor, or cut in butter with pastry knife or fork, until mixture is grainy. Add enough cold rum so that the mixture just comes together. Then refrigerate while you make the filling.
On a cookie sheet, roast the walnuts or pecans in a 350 degree oven until they are fragrant and lightly browned, about 8-10 minutes.
Combine all filling ingredients in a large mixing bowl, and whisk until combined.
Take well- chilled dough from the fridge, and place between two layers of wax paper. Press the dough into a disc, and then roll out to slightly larger than the pie plate, about 1/2 inch.
Then remove the top layer of paper, and place the dough in the pie plate. Gently press the dough into the plate. Then carefully remove the top layer of paper, trying not to tear the dough. Crimp the pie crust.
Place the roasted nuts on top of the crust, and then pour in the pie filling.
Bake at 350 degrees for 45-55 minutes, or until filling is firm, and a knife, when inserted in the middle of the pie is clean when removed.
Let cool and enjoy with fresh whipped cream.