Hurrah for the pumpkin pie you can bake yourself!


November 11, 1992|By Beth Hillson | Beth Hillson,Contributing Writer

Bet you didn't know that pumpkin from a can and the pumpkin you carve for Halloween are the same thing. And, did you also know that pumpkin is a vegetable that's part of the squash family? This recipe calls for canned pumpkin, but it could made with fresh. Start with a 2 pound pumpkin and have an adult cut it in half. Scrape out the seeds. Put both halves, cut side down, on a baking sheet. Pierce the shell a few times with a fork and bake at 350 degrees for about an hour or until it's very soft and the shell begins to cave in. Remove from the oven and let the pumpkin cool completely. Scoop out the orange insides or pulp. Mash the pulp and measure the right amount for the recipe.

There are a lot of recipes that can be made with a pumpkin. It can be served as a vegetable or mixed into cookie or muffin dough. One of the most popular is pumpkin pie. Here's one you can make by yourself or with just a little help.

Kids 9 and over can prepare the entire recipe without assistance, but those under 11 will need help using the oven. Children of all ages should have an adult cut the pumpkin for them if they start with a fresh one.

A word of caution for all chefs: Use potholders when removing the pie from the oven. Make sure pie is pushed back from the edge of the counter so no one will get burned while the pie cools.

, Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 50 minutes

Equipment: 2 large mixing bowls; electric mixer; set of measuring cups and spoons; large mixing spoon; rubber spatula; kitchen fork; baking sheet.

Pumpkin pie Serves 8.

an unbaked, deep-dish, 9-inch pie shell (from the freezer section)

2/3 cup honey

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon allspice

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon cornstarch

15-ounce can pumpkin puree

1 2/3 cups heavy cream

2 large eggs

vanilla ice cream or whipped cream for garnish

Thaw pie crust in the refrigerator overnight. Keep in th refrigerator until you're ready to add the filling. Heat oven to 425 degrees. In a mixing bowl, combine the honey, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, ground cloves, salt, cornstarch, and pumpkin puree. Mix until combined. In another mixing bowl, combine the cream and eggs, and beat with electric mixer until well mixed. Add pumpkin mixture and stir until combined. Stir slowly at first so you don't get splashed.

The pie shell will come with its own aluminum pan. Don't remove the pan or the shell will fall apart. Set the pie shell on the baking sheet. Prick the bottom several times with a fork. Spoon the pumpkin mixture into the crust, filling almost the top of the crust. If the shell is full and you have lots of pumpkin filling left, you probably bought a regular pie shell instead of a deep dish crust. Just pour the leftover pie filling into another pie plate and bake it along with the other pie.

vTC Bake for 15 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake 35 minutes or until the center of the pie is firm. If you have two smaller pies, start checking for doneness after about 25 minutes. Remove and chill or cool to room temperature and serve. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or whipped cream if you like.

Tips: A pumpkin pie or other custard-like pie is done when a sharp knife inserted into its center comes out clean or with a little orange pudding on it. If it comes out watery, let it bake five minutes longer.

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