It’s finally fall! Here in the South where I live, we look forward to fall because our summers are so long and hot. It’s nice to get some relief from the heat and to enjoy some cooler days. One of the things that I enjoy the most about fall is cooking and baking without the kitchen becoming unbearably hot.
One of the recipes that my younger daughter and I love to make together each fall is My Grandmother’s Pumpkin Pie. My grandmother (who was the best cook and baker in the entire world–wasn’t your grandmother the best in the world too?) baked this pumpkin pie every year from October through December every time we kids went for a visit. And we ate them all–whether she made one or ten of them! Her recipe is a little different from the normal, heavy, cinnamon-and-nutmeg-laden pie. It’s more like a custard pie. And even though we usually make it together, it’s easy enough for my daughter (age 11) to make on her own if she wants to.
I have many warm-and-fuzzy memories of my grandmother in the kitchen, hearing the familiar sounds and smelling the familiar smells as she cooked and baked for her family. And I remember waiting with anticipation for her to be finished so we could eat! I will forever think of my grandmother every time I eat this pie or share the recipe with someone. Sweet, happy memories!
If you like more traditional pumpkin pies with lots of spices, you may be surprised by this rather different recipe, and you may even enjoy it! I hope you’ll give it a try and let me know what you think.
GLUTEN FREE: If you eat gluten free like I do, this recipe is really easy to adapt! All you have to do is substitute gluten free flour for the 2 tablespoons of flour called for in the recipe. Then you can either make your favorite gluten free crust to use instead of store bought crust, or you can simply make it without crust! I love to use my glass pie pans (I avoid using aluminum for cooking.) and make my pies without crust. The edges get brown and chewy as the pie bakes, and it’s super yummy! My kids don’t like the chewy part, so they always give me their edges. YUM!
- 1 cup cooked, mashed pumpkin (or 100% canned pumpkin)
- 2 tbsp flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 stick butter, melted
- 1 small can evaporated milk (5 oz.)
- 1 tsp lemon extract
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- cinnamon to taste (I use 1 or 1½ tsp.)
- ready made pie crust
- Mix all ingredients well with a mixer. (Mixture will be pretty soupy.)
- Pour into 2 deep dish pie shells. (Don't overfill or they will bubble over during baking.)
- Bake at 450 for 10 minutes.
- Then reduce heat to 350.
- Bake until center is set and edges are browned.
- NOTE: You may use canned pumpkin; cooked, mashed sweet potatoes; or cooked, mashed butternut squash instead of cooked, mashed pumpkin. They all taste equally yummy in this recipe!
P.S.–My grandmother always loved to eat her piece of pie with a dollop of Cool Whip on it, but I’ve always liked mine just like it is. Try it both ways and see which way you like it best!
What’s your favorite treat to eat around the holidays? Do you have a favorite family recipe that you make each year for Thanksgiving or Christmas?