Fall is a time where things come to what seems like an end; the culmination of many hours of hard work. It is the end of one thing and the start of something else simultaneously. The continuing part of the beautiful cycle of life on this earth. This to me is another opportunity to stop,
Fall is a time where things come to what seems like an end; the culmination of many hours of hard work. It is the end of one thing and the start of something else simultaneously. The continuing part of the beautiful cycle of life on this earth. This to me is another opportunity to stop, reflect and be thankful for our role in that process and for all the life that supports us on this planet.
Just a few weeks ago I was holding on to the last bits of summer. Reality has finally set in, the leaves are now a wide variety of colours, only some of which I can truly appreciate due to my colour blindness. The smell of the grass and the fallen leaves after a rain that only the season can provide adds to the aroma. With October upon us, activities such as harvesting the fields, saving seeds, preserving the harvest, and raking leaves occupy our time. With the official arrival of Fall, comes the seasonal enjoyment of pumpkins and all the wonderfully delicious things you can do with them.
My favourite thing to use them for in the kitchen is pie. Everyone has their own pumpkin pie recipe. Some people I know like a lot of spice, but I’d rather taste the pumpkin with a limited amount of additional seasoning. I am a big fan of pumpkin pie made with real pumpkins, maple syrup, farm fresh eggs and fresh sweet cream. I enjoy this combination of seemingly simple ingredients and how they work together to provide that quintessential fall flavour. This flavour profile is amplified when local and fresh ingredients are used.
For the Dough:
I make my pie doughs using the standard ratios of 3 parts flour, 2 parts fat, 1 part water. Keep your butter or lard as cold as possible and cut into flour that has been mixed with ice cold water. Add a pinch of salt and if desired, sweeten it with sugar or a natural sweetener.
For the Filling:
(use this as a starting point, experiment and adjust it as you like)
- 4 Eggs
- 3 1/2 cups Fresh pumpkin puree
- 1 cup Heavy Cream (use less if your puree is very wet)
- 1/2 cups Maple Syrup
- 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp Ground nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp Ground cloves
- Preheat oven to 425F. Cut pumpkin in half and roast flesh side down until soft. Scrape out pumpkin into a bowl. Let cool.
- If you have a food processor use it for the next part.
- If you don’t have a food processor mash the pumpkin well so that it isn’t lumpy.
- Whisk in brown sugar, maple syrup and half of the cream and salt, incorporate well.
- Vigorously beat in 1 egg at a time. If you desire, whisk in the remaining cream.
- Before you pour the filling in, you have to par-bake the shell until it’s a nice blonde colour.
- Then pour your filling into the par-baked pie shell.
- Reduce oven heat to 350F and bake for 30 minutes or until a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean.