Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pumpkin Cream Pie

We got invited to dinner at our friends' place last night, which was the perfect opportunity to test out my new pumpkin pie recipe before my catering debut at my husband's conference. The resulting pie is more of a mousse-like cream pie than a traditional dense pumpkin. As such, it received rave reviews.

To create said recipe, I combined my favorite parts of two recipes sent to me by a friend in Virginia. The first is a pumpkin pie recipe from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook, and the second is a pumpkin pie recipe from the November & December 2008 issue of Cook's magazine. My aim was to create a pumpkin pie using as many fresh ingredients as possible.

I also should note that this tends to have extra filling leftover. I figure I have enough pumpkin puree from one of my mid-size pumpkins to make a total of four batches of the filling recipe. I'm counting on having enough leftover from that to make at least one extra pie. If you want a denser pie, I suspect you could add 1-2 more egg yolks to the recipe. For the next round of this recipe, I might increase the amount of spices slightly, but otherwise I'll keep it the same.

Pumpkin Cream Pie (makes one 9" pie)
3 large eggs, plus 1 large egg yolk
1.5 c. fresh pumpkin puree
3/4 c. packed light-brown sugar
3/4 t. ground cinnamon
1 t. grated fresh ginger
1/2 t. salt
1/8 t. freshly grated nutmeg
1 c. heavy cream
1/2 c. whole milk
1 t. vanilla
1 T. real maple syrup

Combine filling ingredients and pour into cooked crust. Bake at 350 F for about 43 minutes. Enjoy!

Current Pie Tally: 27

Thursday, September 16, 2010

A Challenge on the Horizon

My husband volunteered me to make half a dozen pies for a conference he is hosting the first weekend of October. Luckily, the pumpkin plant in our garden this year was very productive. I'll probably make 4 pumpkin and 2 of either apple or pecan, for those who don't care for pumpkin. I got to buy a bunch of new pie plates for this. I'm excited! Stay tuned.

Current Pie Tally = 26

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Swirly Twirly Chocolate Cookies

I made these for Labor Day and they came out chewy and fabulous.

Swirly Twirly Chocolate Cookies (about 2.5 dozen)
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 extra large eggs
1 t. vanilla
2 c. all-purpose flour
1/3 c. cocoa
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
9 oz. swirled chocolate chips (semisweet and white)
3/4 c. chopped pecans

Beat the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and beat well to mix. Mix in the dry ingredients. Stir in the chocolate chips and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto an ungreased baking sheet and cook for about 9 min. at 350F.

Current Pie Tally: 26

Friday, September 3, 2010

Apple Rhubarb to Usher in Fall

For the past couple weeks, my last haul of rhubarb from the garden had been daring me to make a pie with it before it went bad. There wasn't enough for a straight-up rhubarb pie and I had some tasty Ginger Gold apples from the farmer's market on the kitchen counter. The result is this pie. My impromptu recipe came out well, though it maybe could have used another 1/4 c. sugar, just to sweeten up those rhubarb-only bites a bit. The crust was also fantastic - light and flaky and flavorful. I think I may be getting better results with the Organic Valley unsalted butter (as opposed to Land O' Lakes, which I sometimes buy when it's on sale or I can't bring myself to shell out the extra cash for organic). My husband and I particularly like how well the maple leaf air vent came out on this one.

Apple Rhubarb Pie (to fill one 9" pie)
11 or so small/medium stalks of rhubarb, sliced into 1/2" pieces
3 large Ginger Gold apples (or Golden Delicious), peeled and sliced 1/4" thick
1 t. cinnamon
1.5 t. lemon juice
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. granulated sugar
2 T. flour

Combine all ingredients and pour into pie shell. Top with second crust. Cut air vent into center. Bake at 425F for 15 minutes, then 350F for an additional 40 min. Allow to cool and enjoy!

Current Pie Tally: 26