How to Cook : Pumpkin Pie

I mentioned in my last post that Olivia & I made pumpkin pies. We started by taking a couple of small pie pumpkins and cutting some slits in them simply by sticking a knife into each one a few times. Then we put them on a cookie sheet and roasted them in a 325 degree oven for a couple of hours. They’re done when you can stick the knife in and feel that the flesh is soft all the way through. Peel the skins off – I love this part! – then let the pumpkins cool. We left ours overnight.

The next morning we cut each one in half and scraped the seeds out. In retrospect I think we wouldn’t have had to do that. We could have just put the whole works into the food mill and let it sort out the undesirables. But we did, and then we just cut the pumpkin flesh into chunks and fed them through the food mill.

If you don’t have a food mill, then scrape the seeds out and run small pieces through a food processor or blender. If you do it this way you may have to add a bit of water to get a smooth consistency.

Then it was time to make the crust. We’re still learning how to make a good pie crust, but these didn’t turn out too bad. I’ve found that making the dough in the food processor works best for me – it keeps me from overworking the dough.

Then simply make the filling, using your pureed pumpkin, pour in the crusts and bake. Easy as…cake. (Ha! Thought I’d say “pie”, didn’t you?)


Olivia sporting her homebaked pie and her new glasses

Pie Crust
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
2/3 cup cold butter or lard
1/4 cup ice water

Put flour & salt in food processor. Cut butter into chunks. Add 1 chunk at a time to food processor, and pulse a few times after adding each chunk. Add water and pulse until small crumbs form. At that point we gave it the “pinch test”. Pinch a little bit of dough together. If it feels too dry and doesn’t hold together, add another teaspoon of water, pulse a few times and then test again. Repeat until you have a dough that feels right. It should hold together but not be sticky. It’s one of those things you just kind of have to do a few times until you get a feel for it.

Roll dough, on floured board, into a circle about 1″ larger than your pie pan. Fold dough in half, lay into pie pan, then unfold and ease loosely into the pie pan. Don’t stretch it! Trim the excess dough from around the edge with a serrated knife.

The pie recipe we used is from my grandma’s Betty Crocker cookbook circa 1956:

Pumpkin Pie Filling
(for a 9″ pie)

1-3/4 c. mashed cooked pumpkin
1/2 t. salt
1-3/4 c. milk
3 eggs
2/3 c. brown sugar
2 T. granulated sugar
1-1/4 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. ginger
1/2 t. nutmeg
1/4 t. cloves

Beat all ingredients together. Pour into pie crust. Bake 45 to 55 minutes at 425 degrees, or until a silver knife inserted 1 inch from the side of the filling comes out clean. The center may still look soft but will set later.

3 years ago:

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2 years ago:

Tree ’06

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1 year ago:

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Daily bread details – Part Deaux

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7 Responses to How to Cook : Pumpkin Pie

  1. heyercapital says:

    This year we ran the 4H Pumpkin decorating contest, so afterwards we were able to snag several pie pumpkins before they hit the dumpster. I’ll have to try your method of roasting them intact. Thanks for posting.

  2. You’re daughter looks so cute baking and making the pies. Good Job!!!

  3. Anonymous says:

    THANK YOU! I now know what I did wrong!!!!

  4. Nicole says:

    Great glasses! And nice nail polish to match!

  5. Mmmmmmm!!!! Thanks for walking me through the entire ‘pumpkin-to-pie’ process. I’m going to copy and save the recipes for both pie and crust and take your tips to heart.I also enjoyed seeing the lovely and oh-so-talented Olivia at the kitchen helm. Kudos young Baker girl!~LisaNew Mexico

  6. Christy says:

    Nice glasses! I just got new ones too. I’ve found using the food processor is the only way I can make good biscuits.

  7. The DINKs says:

    Nice Site! I’ll be back for more….an urbanite wanna-be-farmer.If you are interested, the BEST tutorial I have ever seen on making pie crust is at a site called smitten kitchen:http://smittenkitchen.com/2008/11/pie-crust-102-all-butter-really-flaky-pie-dough/Deb has posted a series of tutorials, with pictures. Made my first pie crust for a Thanksgiving leftover pot pie, and it was heavenly!