Let’s face it, it’s not Thanksgiving without the pumpkin pie! Let alone this entire season of pumpkin everything! And I am so happy that I can continue this traditional pie at my holiday dinner, even though the ingredients may not be so traditional. I have been making this pumpkin filling over the last few years; this year using the olive oil crust recipe from my apple pie.
The spices are all the usual warming spices found in a pumpkin pie, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves. The pumpkin I use is organic canned pumpkin (not pie filling) and this recipe calls for 2 1/2 cups; which will use two, 15 oz cans. I use the leftover pumpkin for adding to my overnight oats, pumpkin smoothie with frozen bananas and even a small 1/2 teaspoon to my coffee – it melts right into the coffee, adding a real pumpkin flavor!
The raw cashews, when soaked at least 3 or more hours, drained and added to the filling ingredients, should blend up smoothly and marry perfectly with the flavors. I prefer to use regular molasses as the pie is lighter in color than when using blackstrap molasses, as you can see in the following picture, which turns the pie into a darker color and intense flavor. Still fabulous tasting, but not as traditional in color.
Pumpkin pies can easily be made a day or two ahead. Both the crust and the filling can be made the day before, storing separately until baking day or you can bake the pie, cool completely, cover in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to two days.
You can also make the pie up to a month in advance and freeze the pumpkin pie. To freeze, let the pie cool completely, wrap it with a few layers of plastic wrap, then a layer or two of aluminum foil tightly. Let the pie defrost overnight in the refrigerator.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine the flour and salt in a medium bowl. Combine the milk and oil, but do not stir together. Pour into the bowl with the flour and salt. Mix together with a fork until just combined; press into a large ball by hand. Be careful to not overwork the dough. Shape by pressing gently into a flat round. Roll the disc between two lightly floured wax paper sheets. Roll to a very thin crust reaching a 12inch diameter. Gently place into a 9″ pie plate, lightly sprayed with coconut oil. Trim the edges leaving about a 1/2 inch, patching where needed with the extra dough. Place the crust lined pie plate in the refrigerator while making the filling.
For the filling:
Blend all pie filling in a food processor until smooth. The mixture should be thick. Gently fill the crust and smooth over the top with a spatula. To avoid the edges burning, I like to tent the pie with foil – loosely placing a large sheet of foil over my pie – for the first 15-20 minutes. I then remove the large foil and use a pie crust shield to protect the crust, or form the foil to cover the crust and continue baking for another 15-20 minutes until the filling is firm and dark and crust nicely browned. Let cool completely before serving. May be made the day before.
I love being in the kitchen. Early mornings, soft music, a hot espresso. Easing into the preparation of delicious meals. Glancing through cookbooks, gathering inspiration and planning my day. I look forward to the cycles of the seasons, the pleasures of tasting and savoring and sharing this with those dear to me. Weekends are special to me as my week days are often rushed, but still I create the ambiance, light the candles, set the table and uncork the wine.