Serves: Makes 1 (10-inch) regular pie or 1 (9-inch) deep-dish pie, serving 10 to 12
- 1 recipe Flaky Pie Dough (recipe follows)
- 3 large eggs
- 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ¾ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg (about 20 grates on a whole nutmeg)
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1½ cups heavy whipping cream
- ½ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 cups canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
- Whipped cream, for serving
Yields one 9-inch pie crust
- 1-¼ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 stick unsalted butter, cold, cut into ½-inch cubes
- ¼ to ⅓ cup ice water
Procedures:Thanksgiving just may be everyone’s favorite holiday. After all, what’s better than a day completely devoted to a delicious feast shared by family and friends, all giving thanks for their blessings? This recipe takes an American classic to celebration status with a careful blend of spices and heavy cream, outshining the stale spice mix and evaporated milk of less enchanting recipes. Ever notice how spices clump up and don’t blend well when added to a custard? The trick is to blend them first with the eggs, whose fat helps the clumps disperse evenly, before adding any liquid to the custard mixture.
To make the dough, place the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl. Using a pastry blender, two knives or your fingers, cut or rub the butter into the flour mixture until the butter pieces are the size of peas. Sprinkle ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, over the flour mixture. Stir and fluff the flour mixture with a fork until shaggy clumps form. Pick up the large clumps and squeeze to test for moisture. If clumps hold together, transfer them to a work surface and continue adding tablespoons of ice water and stirring.
Gather the clumps of dough together on a work surface. If the butter feels soft, cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 30 minutes before proceeding. If the butter still feels cold, knead the dough gently 4 or 5 times. If dough falls apart, return it to the mixing bowl and sprinkle teaspoons of ice water and mix with a fork until dough holds together when squeezed.
Flatten the dough into a disk about 6 inches wide, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes before rolling.
Bake the shell: Preheat the oven to 375°F and position an oven rack in the bottom third. Line the chilled pie shell with heavy-duty foil, pressing the foil firmly and smoothly into the crevices of the pan. Fill the pan with pie weights. Make sure the weights reach up the sides to the rim of the pan (the center does not need to be filled quite as full). Bake the shell for 20 to 22 minutes, until the foil comes away from the dough easily (if it doesn't, then bake another 5 to 6 minutes and check again). Remove the pan from the oven, close the oven door, and lift out the foil and weights from the shell; set them aside to cool. Return the pan to the oven to continue baking the shell for about 10 minutes, then remove the pan from the oven, close the oven door, and check to see if any cracks have formed. If you see a crack, very gently smear a tiny bit of reserved dough over the crack to patch it-you need only enough to seal the opening. Return the pan to the oven and bake 10 to 15 minutes longer, until the crust is a nice golden brown all over. Transfer to a rack and cool slightly. Lower the oven temperature to 350°F.
While the pie crust is baking, make the filling: Whisk the eggs in the large bowl to break them up. Add the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, and salt and whisk well to blend evenly. Whisk in the cream, brown sugar, and granulated sugar and blend well. Strain the mixture through the strainer into the medium saucepan, pressing on the strainer with the spatula to push through any lumps of brown sugar. Add the pumpkin puree and whisk until the custard mixture is thoroughly blended. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with the spatula and scraping all over the bottom of the pan to prevent the eggs from scrambling, for 7 to 9 minutes, until the mixture feels lightly thickened and registers 150°F on an instant-read thermometer. Do not let the mixture scramble or you'll have to begin again. Remove from the heat.
If the pie crust has cooled, reheat it in the oven for 5 minutes. Scrape the hot custard into the hot pie shell and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until the custard is set. Test by tapping the side of the pie pan-the center of the pie should look firm and move as one piece (professionals call this the Jell-O jiggle). Transfer the pie to a rack and cool completely, about 2 hours.
To serve, slice the pie with a thin and sharp knife and use a pie server to transfer each slice to a plate. Serve with whipped cream. Storing Store at room temperature for up to 8 hours. For longer storage, cover with plastic and refrigerate. Remove the pie from the refrigerator 1 hour before serving. Pumpkin pie is best the first or second day, as the crust begins to soften over time. It will keep, covered with plastic wrap, in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.