Felicity Cloake’s ultimate pumpkin pie

18 Nov


No Thanksgiving dinner would be complete without a pumpkin pie. We’ve added a bit of extra spice and booze to Felicity Cloake’s excellent recipe. The pastry is divine and very simple to make, but store bought is fine. Good maple syrup is essential for an authentic taste. This recipe fills a 20cm diameter tart tin and serves 8-10.

For the pastry

170g plain flour
Pinch of salt
100g cold butter
2 tbsp caster sugar
1 egg yolk

For the pie filling

1 small culinary pumpkin
145g maple syrup
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cloves
4 tbsp golden rum
2 large eggs, beaten
150ml (2/3 cup) evaporated milk

Whipped cream, to serve
Pre-heat the oven to 200º C (400º F). Cut pumpkin into quarters, scooping out the seeds and fibres inside. Place skin-side up on a baking tray with a couple of tablespoons of water. Roast for about half an hour, until tender.

Take the pumpkin out and leave to cool slightly, then peel off the skin when cool. Scoop the flesh into a food processor, whizz until smooth, then put into a fine sieve suspended over a bowl and drain for at least an hour.

Meanwhile, make your pastry. Sift the flour into a mixing bowl, stir in the salt, then grate in the butter. Rub in using your fingertips until it resembles breadcrumbs, then stir through the sugar. Mix the egg yolk with 2 tbsp iced water, and sprinkle half over the mixture, then stir together with a knife until it comes together in a paste – add a little more liquid if necessary.

Bring the mixture together with your fingertips, and then roll out on a floured surface to the thickness of a £1 coin. Use it to line a 20cm tart tin. Cover with clingfilm and chill for 30 minutes.

Line the pastry case with greaseproof paper and fill with baking beans. Put in the oven for 15 minutes, then remove the paper and beans, and bake for another 5-10 minutes until the base is pale golden. Remove from the oven. Turn the oven down to 180º C.

Meanwhile, put 250g pumpkin purée in a large bowl, discarding the excess liquid, and stir in the maple syrup, rum if using, and spices. Taste for sweetness, then mix in the eggs. Gradually stir in the evaporated milk until you have a thick, creamy consistency – you may not need it all. Pour into the pastry case.

Bake for about 40 minutes, checking from half an hour onwards, until the filling is set, but still slightly wobbly in the centre. Allow to cool on a wire rack for at least an hour before serving. Serve with softly whipped cream.

Photos: browniesfordinner, jamesjyu


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