25 January 2018

Perfect Pumpkin Pie - Without Canned Milk

Perfect Pumpkin Pie - Without Canned Milk (this photo - slice of pie with whipped cream) / www.delightfulrepast.com

Pumpkin pie is one of my favorite autumn and winter desserts. You may be pumpkined-out, but I’m not. And neither are our friends, apparently.

A couple we know likes to drop off little surprises for us from time to time. This time it was a can of organic pumpkin (a broad hint, if ever there was one).

When they drop off ice cream, they always call after they drive away just to make sure we bring it in before it melts!

I've posted Pumpkin Pie before, one made with canned evaporated milk. But I can't buy organic evaporated milk just anywhere, so I worked on a recipe I can make with readily available organic milk and cream.

Sometimes, when my Southern genes are coming out, I make Sweet Potato Pie instead. But I make pumpkin when the Pilgrim genes are coming out (several of my paternal grandfather's ancestors came over on the Mayflower).

And, besides, our friends had requested pumpkin. I mean, if they had wanted sweet potato pie, they would have dropped off sweet potatoes, right?

When I make pumpkin pie for just us, I only use 1/4 cup of sugar. I know, I know, it sounds extreme; but we love it. However, I know other people might not, so I “go crazy” with the sugar and use 2/3 cup when making the pie for guests.

Most pumpkin pie recipes call for two eggs, but I make mine with three for added protein. And since I wanted to par-bake the crust before filling it (no soggy bottoms!), I added an egg yolk to help keep the all-butter crust tender through its double baking.


Perfect Pumpkin Pie - Without Canned Milk - secrets to perfectly smooth custard and perfectly flaky--no soggy bottoms!--crust (this photo - slice of pie and a teapot) / www.delightfulrepast.com


Pumpkin Pie


(Makes one 9-inch pie, 8 servings)


The Pastry (or my Gluten-Free Pie Crust)


1 1/3 dip-and-sweep cups (6.67 ounces/189 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 sticks (5 ounces/142 grams) unsalted butter, well chilled

1 large egg yolk
3 tablespoons ice water
Additional ice water, a teaspoon at a time, if needed

The Filling


2/3 cup (4.67 ounces/132 grams) sugar
1 tablespoon non-GMO cornstarch
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
3 large eggs
1 15-ounce (425 grams) can pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling) or 1 3/4 cups pumpkin puree
1/2 cup (4 fluid ounces/118 ml) heavy cream
1/2 cup (4 fluid ounces/118
ml) milk

1 In medium bowl, whisk together flour and salt. With coarse grater, grate about 3/4 of the stick of butter into flour bowl. Cut the remaining butter into 1/2-inch cubes. With fingers, quickly work the grated butter into the flour until it looks like coarse crumbs. Add the cubed butter and work it into the crumbs, leaving some pieces the size of small peas.

2 In small bowl, beat together egg yolk and 3 tablespoons ice water. Sprinkle over flour mixture while stirring with large fork. Add a little more water, a teaspoon at a time, if needed.

3 Turn dough out onto a piece of plastic wrap and flatten slightly into a 5-inch round disk with smooth edges; double wrap; refrigerate for one hour or up to four days. May be frozen for up to a month; defrost, wrapped, in the refrigerator.

4 If dough is thoroughly chilled, let it stand at room temperature for 15 minutes before rolling. Very lightly butter a 9-inch glass pie plate; I usually just run the butter wrapper over it. On lightly floured surface, roll out disk to a 13-inch circle about 1/8 inch thick. Place pastry in pie plate, being careful to not stretch the dough. Leave a 1-inch overhang of dough. Crimp the edge. (Sometimes you need to chill the pastry a bit before crimping.) Flute the edge higher than usual to contain the filling. Cover loosely and place in freezer for 15 minutes. Preheat oven to 375F/190C/Gas5.

Pumpkin Pie - Without Canned Milk (this photo - unbaked pie shell) / www.delightfulrepast.com


5 Fit a square of aluminum foil in the shell and fill with ceramic pie weights (baking beans). Set on a rimmed baking sheet (to catch butter drips). Bake the thoroughly chilled crust for 20 minutes, the remove the foil and pie weights and bake for another 10 minutes.


Perfect Pumpkin Pie (this photo - unbaked pie shell filled with pie weights) / www.delightfulrepast.com


Note: I use two boxes of the ceramic pie weights, and they just fit nicely into a 200-gram tea tin!

6 Remove par-baked pie shell from the oven; leave the oven at 375F/190C/Gas5. While pie shell is cooling on a wire rack for 30 minutes, prepare filling.

7 In medium bowl (using a 2-quart glass measure makes it easy to pour the filling into the crust), whisk together sugar, cornstarch, salt and spices. Whisk in the eggs, then the pumpkin and then the milk and cream. Let the filling stand at room temperature until the pie shell is cool. 

8 Pour the filling into the par-baked shell. Put on a pie crust shield to prevent the edge of the crust from over-browning.  As soon as you put the pie in the oven, reduce temperature to 350F/180C/Gas4. Bake for about 60 to 70 minutes or until knife inserted midway between edge and center comes out clean or until it registers 185F/85C on an instant-read thermometer.

Note: After you've made pumpkin pie a few times, you can tell just by looking whether or not it's done. It will look darker and shinier and will have puffed up a bit and then fallen, and it should be fairly firm but still have a little jiggle left in the center.

9 Cool on wire rack for 2 hours, then lay a square of wax paper over the top and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Serve with softly whipped cream. I sweetened and flavored 1 cup of heavy whipping cream with 4 teaspoons of real maple syrup and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.

Note: Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 or 4 days. As if!

Disclosure: We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon .com and affiliated sites.

82 comments:

Bernideen said...

This is very interesting. I used to make the butter based pie crust for years but also noticed it was hard - like shortbread and quit. I shall have to try again with your recipe!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

I hope you will. I'd love to get your feedback on it. I found that with the changes I made, it was easy to put a fork through it even the next day.

Thomas "Sully" Sullivan said...

Ah. Ha-ha. A quarter cup of sugar per piece of pumpkin pie, that’s what you meant – right, right? Well, knowing your quests for excellence and your preciseness with all the things that matter, I take it on faith that this rendition of pumpkin pie is exquisite. Sounds sort of toward the custard end of the spectrum. Could work, could work (he said). Pumpkin pie has such a strong base, it wouldn’t take much sugar to accent the flavor. And more than most – it strikes me – this pie can become a tasteless disaster. And, of course, there’s always whip cream…

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Sully, our friends who requested the pie commented that it was a good balance of flavors and that they often find pumpkin pies either too bland ("a tasteless disaster") or too heavy on one spice or another. And, of course, the whipped cream - never whipped "topping."

Briony S said...

I love Pumpkin Pie, it's not exactly readily available here in the UK so I always have to bake it but haven't found the right recipe yet. I shall be trying this one out!! #BloggerclubUK

Pauline Wiles said...

I love the idea of dropping off ingredients on your doorstep and seeing what happens to them! Your friends are smart...
No, I'm not pumpkin-ed out. In fact, reading this has reminded me of a pumpkin risotto recipe I enjoy. It might be time to dig that out!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Briony, I hope this will be the recipe you've been looking for! Do let me know how it turns out for you.

Mrs Shoes said...

If I drop off the ingredients, could you whip up a wedding cake for my daughter? ;-)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Pauline, they are a hoot! And they're big coffee fans, not just grinding but also roasting their own coffee, and always bring me organic fair trade decaf coffee.

At Rivercrest Cottage said...

Oh Jean, this sounds wonderful. I'm embarrassed to say I've never thought of pre-baking the crust. But, I'm going to make your pie just the way you wrote it, and I'm betting it will taste as good as it sounds. Thanks for the recipe. I'll be posting how mine turns out when I make it and providing a link to your post for the recipe. Thanks again.

Daniela said...

It sounds truly delicious ... my mouth is watering, I so love pumpkin cakes, thank you for sharing another wonderful recipe of yours, darling Jean!

Wishing you a most lovely remainder of your week

XOXO Dany

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Sure, Mrs Shoes, that would be fun! I learned how to decorate wedding cakes back in the day. What flavor do you want?

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

I've made many a pumpkin pie without prebaking the crust, Sugar, but the only way to be sure you don't have a soggy bottom is to prebake it. An oven hot enough to keep the filled crust from being soggy is too hot to keep the pumpkin custard smooth and not grainy. I'm so glad you're going to make this! Can't wait to hear/read about it!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, Dany dear! I hope you are enjoying a beautiful winter.

ellen b said...

Great instructions for this delicious looking pie!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, Ellen. I hope they work well for everyone.

Tony Grant said...

Of course we have pumpkins here in Britain but we don't often eat them. Well I don't. It must be an American tradition. But, I am ,"UP," for trying pumpkin pie.Yours especially, Jean. I have got a set of ceramic pastry balls, Jean, I am proud to say. It took me a while to find a shop that sold them. My local TESCOS doesn't sell them. I used to use dry Basmati rice to do the weighing down whenever I made pastry. A waste of rice. But, now I have got,"balls," Jean. I have got, balls!! Ha! Ha!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Tony, I've never heard anyone call them ceramic pastry "balls," but I'm glad you finally got some! (Thought you would have called them ceramic baking "beans.")

Tony Grant said...

Yes we do Jean. A bit of ,"basic," humour Jean."Double entendre!!" I hope you don't mind.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

I know, Tony; I should have put a "wink" after my reply!

Jeanie said...

I'll have to share this with Rick. I'm not that fond of pumpkin pie but he is and so at holidays he's the one to make it! Nice that it doesn't have canned milk!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Jeanie. How wonderful that Rick is so capable in the kitchen!

Sandi@ Rose Chintz Cottage said...

Jean, your pie looks and sounds marvellous! I love pie, especially pumpkin and other than the milk and cream, our recipes are pretty much alike. I like the sound of using milk and cream instead of evaporated milk. I can eat pumpkin pie any time because it's a favourite! I have taken to baking crustless pies though if possible. Trying to cut out the gluten and less calories, right? When my children were growing up I would bake two pies almost every weekend. Not so much now. I might bake three a year! Oh, but we enjoy them when I do make them!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Sandi, thank you! I'd say try it with my gluten-free crust, but it's no fewer calories! :D

Louca por porcelana said...

Pumpkin pie is unusual here but sounds good!Thanks for sharing,Jean!Have a lovely weekend...Here is too hot...Hugs!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Hugs to you, Maristella! Since it is served cold, you might just like it in hot weather.

Pom Pom said...

Yummy! I love reading about it even though I can't have milk. I tried to make a little pumpkin custard with rice milk and it was a smidge sloppy, but tasted pretty good!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, K Pom Pom! I haven't done it, but I bet you could make this with rice milk. It is a small enough quantity of liquid that with the addition of three eggs and that bit of cornstarch, I think it would work!

kitty@ Kitty's Kozy Kitchen said...

Oh my goodness Jean, now you have me craving pumpkin pie! Does yours ever look good, too. I've always used evaporated milk, but I like your idea, and may have to give it a try. Thank you for sharing with us.

aspiritofsimplicity said...

Pumpkin pie is one of my very favorites. I use squash instead of pumpkin. We like it with lots of spices and a little less sugar.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, Kitty! Of course, it's good either way. Just wanted to demonstrate that if you're out of evaporated milk you can still make the pie!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Kara. I love to make it with butternut squash and always, for us, less sugar. There are probably other squashes that would work, too, but I've only used the butternut.

Margie said...

I've always associated pumpkin pie with fall weather, but I'd enjoy a piece of your tasty pie right now!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Margie, thank you. It's soooo good with a cup of tea!

Richard Sheppard said...

Looks like a beautiful pumpkin pie Jean! Interesting recipe without canned milk and adding an egg yoke to the crust. I can eat pumpkin pie anytime of the year. it's best for breakfast. :-)

Angie Schneider said...

The pie looks bakery perfect! Wish I could find some pumpkin at this time of year. Have never seen canned pumpkin puree over here.

Lea Ann (Cooking On The Ranch) said...

I have no idea why I don't make Pumpkin pie other than on Thanksgiving. I love it so much. And I've never made sweet potato pie - you've inspired me to bake this weekend. And especially with that beautiful photo of a slice of pie.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Richard. That egg yolk kept the crust tender through its double baking. No matter how delicately I handled my regular all-butter pastry, after the double baking you could not get your fork through it!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Angie, thank you! If you can get some canned butternut squash, that would work well, too.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Lea Ann, thank you. I hope you have a lovely weekend in the kitchen. Don't tell me you only ever roast a turkey on Thanksgiving! :-)

Cheryl said...

I never tire of pumpkin! However, I don't have a good track record with pie crust . . . sigh. Sometimes I still attempt it, and sometimes I resort to a store-bought shell. (I know, I know.) This weekend, we are having a birthday party and my daughter is making chocolate-brownie-peanut butter trifle by special request. But now I am thinking about pumpkin pie! Maybe next week . . .

Shiju Sugunan said...

Looks and sounds delish!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Cheryl, I think this is a good crust for you to try - because it's just one pie shell, so a smaller amount of dough to work with; it has that egg yolk in it to tenderize the crust, so even if you overwork the dough and don't get "flaky" you can still have "tender."

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Shiju, thank you. I hate to have you see my photos! :D Your photos are really marvelous!

Pam Richardson said...

Jean, I love pumpkin pie. I am going to try your recipe and thanks for sharing! Happy weekend!

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

I love a good pumpkin pie and I can just bet this is a winner! I love where you keep you pie weights-brilliant. How nice to have presents left by your door. Have a nice weekend. ♥

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Pam, thank you. Do let me know how it turns out for you!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Martha. And I have a lot more uses for all my tea tins -- at the rate I drink tea, I go through a LOT of loose tea! :D

Life Redesign 101 said...

I love pumpkin pie- it is my favorite dessert of all time. I have been eating all organic and gluten free, so I am going to try your gluten free pie crust. That will be a first for me. I sometimes make the pumpkin pie without any crust- just a bowl pf the pumpkin ingredients in the oven. That has been my gluten free version!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Michele, I get lots of compliments on my GF crust. I hope you like it, too! Let me know how it turns out for you.

Cocoa and Lavender said...

Your recipe isn’t dissimilar from the one I recently posted. I’d much prefer to use cream and milk over the evaporated canned milk, as well. It makes for a much richer pie! I need to try your trick of using an egg yolk on the crust – I use an egg white! I’m anxious to see what the difference will be… Either way, great minds do think alike. Seal that crust and you won’t have a soggy bottom!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

David, unlike the egg white being brushed on to seal the crust, the egg yolk is mixed into the pastry to keep it tender through the double baking. For some reason, the all-butter crust becomes impossible to cut with a fork after double baking. But maybe that only happens to me? Let me know your findings!

Pattie @ Olla-Podrida said...

Oh, gosh, this sounds good! I'm so pleased to see a pumpkin pie recipe that doesn't use canned milk. Is it just me, or is there something seriously disgusting about canned milk? I'm not a pie fan, per se, but I do love the filling on a pumpkin pie, and I imagine this would make a great filling for a pumpkin trifle. PThanks for this. I enjoyed this post.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Pattie! And sign me up for some of that pumpkin trifle! I've heard of people putting canned milk in their coffee and tea, but that doesn't sound good to me.

Karen (Back Road Journal) said...

Pumpkin pie is too good to only have once of twice a year. Thanks for sharing your recipe.

Sharing Life's Moments said...

I love pumpkin pie. I have never taken the time to make one myself, but your recipe looks easy to follow and make.

Thank you for sharing it with us.

Miz Helen said...

Hi Jean,
What a great Pumpkin Pie that we will enjoy any time of the year! Hope you are having a great day and thanks so much for sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday and come back to see us real soon!
Miz Helen

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Karen, I so agree with you! I'll probably make it again in about a month.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, Miz Helen! Love #FPT - see you Thursday!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

SLM, thank you. I hope you will try it soon. I think you'll find it's a pie you can make quite easily.

handmade by amalia said...

Looks good, Jean. I'd love to give it a try.
Amalia
xo

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Amalia. I hope you will!

Tracy Albiero said...

I hate soggy pie bottoms. I will have to give this a try. #triumphanttales

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Tracy, I knooooooowww - aren't soggy pie bottoms the worst?!

xinex said...

This do look perfect, Jean and looks so delivious....Christine

xinex said...

I meant delicious

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, Christine! And I knew what you meant -- some days (and today is one of them) I can't stop making typos!

Mrs Mummy Harris said...

I hate to say it but I frikkin hate pumpkin!!!! eurgh!
Thank you for sharing this with us at #TriumphantTales. I hope to see you back next week!

Mrs Mummy Harris said...

Oh these photos are adorable! Ben loved messy play and I cannot wait to get the twins involved too!
Thank you for sharing this with us at #TriumphantTales. I hope to see you back next week!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

That's okay, Mrs Mummy, I'm sure there are a lot of people who hate pumpkin! :-)

Jann Olson said...

Looks yummy Jean! I've never heard of making a pumpkin pie without canned milk. Thanks for sharing the recipe with SYC.
hugs,
Jann

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Jann! It's all good - I like to have a way of making something with whatever you happen to have on hand.

roughterrain crane said...

Looks delicious. Pumpkin pie is one of the best winter sweets for me.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, rtc. Maybe it's because the spices are warming.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Given a choice between pumpkin pie and sweet potato pie, I'll take sweet potato pie 9 times out of 10. Maybe 10 out of 10! But pumpkin pie is good, and since there usually isn't a choice, I'm always happy to get it. This looks terrific -- thanks.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, John! Yes, there usually isn't a choice! But it's all good!

Dr. Elise Cohen Ho said...

My daughter makes wonderful pie. I love when she makes cute little designs on the top too.

Ruth W said...

Hi Jean...Yay! I love pumpkin pie but don’t make it because of the canned milk. Cool! And I posted a pumpkin recipe on my Facebook page today too! I love it anytime! Thanks for linking to Tuesday Cuppa Tea
Ruth

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

That's great, Elise. Then you don't have to! :-)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Ruth, thank you so much! I hope you'll make it soon.

April J Harris said...

I'm adding less and less sugar to things these days as well, Jean, but I have to remember to bump it up a bit when friends come to visit, as you do! Love this recipe as I so much prefer the idea of using fresh milk and cream to canned milk. Thank you so much for sharing it, and for being a part of the Hearth and Soul Link Party.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

April, thank you. Yes, always remember to "bump it up" for guests. Years ago I made "our" low-sugar version of rice pudding and served it to my in-laws. They felt comfortable enough with me to ask for the sugar bowl! :D

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