I thought I could never find a pumpkin pie better than Ms. Fountain’s. I was wrong.
The Thanksgiving issue of Bon Appetit arrived a few weeks ago, and I got all excited looking through those glossy pages. So many holiday dishes! So many things to try!
G. had been asking me for a few weeks to make a pumpkin pie, so on the day I cooked a turkey, I also made pie. Actually, I made two pies. I made Ms. Fountain’s pumpkin pie because that has been our favorite. And then I decided to try a new pie from Bon Appetit.
That’s our new favorite.
We had friends over that night (a good thing, or we’d probably each have eaten a whole pie), and everyone said the new pie was “smoother” than Ms. Fountain’s. The pie definitely has a softness in flavor that I suspect comes from exchanging sugar for maple syrup as the sweetener.
I was concerned about using 2 tablespoons of bourbon because neither G. nor I are big drinkers, but there was no heavy alcohol taste.
The kicker for G. (of course) was the chocolate crust. That man loves chocolate! I have to say, though, I loved the crust too. I had some extra dough, and I rolled it out into little circles and baked it by itself. It made a nice shortbread cookie.
The recipe below uses Bon Appetit’s crust verbatim. The filling is a mix of Ms. Fountain’s and the magazine’s. I couldn’t go exactly with the magazine’s directions because it used canned pumpkin, and I had fresh pumpkin puree, which has much more liquid. In summary, I added cornstarch, reduced the heavy cream and eliminated sour cream from Bon Appetit’s recipe.
The pie took over an hour to bake in my oven. I would start watching it at about 45 minutes and look for the center to just solidify before removing the pie from the heat.
Maple and Bourbon Pumpkin Pie with a Chocolate Crust
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
3 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar (this is equal to 3 tablespoons and 1 1/2 teaspoons)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
6 tablespoons butter, chilled
2 tablespoons vegetable shortening, chilled
1 large egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon cider vinegar
1/4 cup ice water
Put the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt, butter and shortening into food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles a coarse meal. Pour that into a bowl.
Whisk together the egg yolk, vinegar and water. Add that to the flour mixture and knead into a dough. Form the dough into a ball, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour.
Turn the dough onto a floured surface and roll it out into a pie crust.
15 ounces pumpkin puree, fresh not canned (2 cups)
3/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons bourbon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/8 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon mace
Beat the eggs. Add the maple syrup, heavy cream and pumpkin. Beat some more.
Add the cornstarch, salt, spices, bourbon and vanilla. Beat some more.
Pour the filling into the pie crust.
Bake the pie at 350 degrees for about 50 minutes, but don’t over bake. When the center jiggles just a bit, it’s done.