This pie was hell to make, not because the recipe was complicated or advanced, but was simply due to the fact that I had shit for brains and butter fingers the day I attempted to make this recipe. I ended up going to the market, four, count em' four times that day because I kept forgetting ingredients, and one of the times I had to go to the market was because while I was in the midst of combining ingredients for the pumpkin filling, I went to the refrigerator to grab the eggs, and proceeded to drop half a dozen eggs on the kitchen floor, half on the cork tile, half on the carpet. Trying to pick up the eggs was like trying to pick up gobs and gobs of snots, which kept spreading all over the kitchen floor - not fun to clean, especially when you realize, that you need to go back to the store AGAIN, because now you have no eggs, while in the middle of making the pie and baking the pie shell. SHIT.
I just had a bad kitchen day - nothing worked, as my Nana would say, I was so stupid that day couldn't pour piss out of a boot with the instructions written on the heel. If there is a silver lining to this pie making catastrophe it's that the pie, well, it was good as hell, and worth the effort.
Pumpkin Praline Pie
1 (9-inch) pie shell, chilled in pie plate for 30 minutes
1 (15-ounce) can plain pumpkin puree
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup evaporated milk
3 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup pecans, chopped fine
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 tsp dark corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp granulated sugar
1. FOR THE PIE: Adjust oven rack to the middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line pie shell with foil, cover with 2 cups pie weights (pennies or dried beans are fine too), and bake until dough under foil dries out, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove foil and weights, poke crust several times with a fork, and continue to bake until firmly set and lightly browned, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove pie shell from oven (keep oven on) and set aside. (Shell can be cooled, wrapped tightly in plastic and stored at room temperature for 1 day.
2. FOR THE FILLING: Puree the pumpkin, brown sugar, spices and salt in a food processor until smooth, about 1 minute. Cook mixture in large saucepan over medium high heat until sputtering and thickened, about 4 minutes, and remove from heat. Meanwhile, put pie shell back in oven to warm.
3. Whisk evaporated milk into pumpkin mixture, then whisk in eggs and vanilla. Pour filling into warmed pie shell and bake until filling is puffed and cracked around the edges and center barely jiggles when pie is shaken, about 35 minutes.
4. FOR THE TOPPING: While pie is baking, toss pecans, brown sugar, and salt in bowl. Add corn syrup and vanilla, using fingers to ensure that ingredients are well blended.
5. Scatter topping evenly over puffed filling and sprinkle with granulated sugar. Bake until pecans are fragrant and topping is bubbling around the edges, about 10 minutes. Cool pie completely on wire rack, at least 2 hours. (Pie can be refrigerated up to 2 days) Serve pie at room temperature.
Rating = So God Damn Good.
ALSO - the day after Thanksgiving I was reading my latest Women's Health magazine and there was an article titled Season's Eatings which talked about how to make healthier food choices during the holiday glut, and one tip was to have Pecan Topped Pumpkin Pudding instead of Pecan Pie so go figure, I was being all healthy and whatnot with this pie choice. (Somehow I don't believe that).
I was also in the car a lot this weekend, so I listened to the radio a lot and inevitably every radio dj talked about the holiday food bonanza that is the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas, and one dj mentioned a statistic that seemed so startling to me. He said that the average American puts on 9, (NINE) pounds between Thanksgiving and Christmas. I just could not believe it, it seemed too outrageous. Does this statistic seem plausible to everyone? I was shocked, just shocked, as I feed myself another slice of pumpkin pecan pie.