(all the pies lined up and waiting for little fingers to poke them)
When my Aunt Lynn passed away a few years ago, I was dubbed the "Pie maker" at our Thanksgiving celebrations. A role I take quite seriously. I only make one version of pumpkin pie- Libby's recipe off the can! Are you surprised? Hope not,it is as easy as, well, pie to make! After the crust, it literally takes just minutes to throw a pumpkin pie together and the aroma that fills your house is well worth that time!
The last time I made pie crust, the recipe made 2 rounds, so I took one and formed it into my pie pan and threw it in a zippy bag and popped it in the freezer. That made my Thanksgiving morning pie prep super easy this year! It was an ALL butter crust! WHOA baby. I needed to try something a little different for my pecan pie.
I had clipped a pie crust recipe from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette a few months back and decided to give it a go. It was an all shortening pie crust and was so supposed to be very easy to make and didn't need to chill before being rolled out into crust. I was game for a simple recipe like that. I used the pie crust recipe for my pecan pie.
Speaking of pecan pie, how about another simple pie to make? I mean these two are really quite easy. Good pecans can be quite expensive but we are talking about the holidays and it's hard to have Thanksgiving or Christmas without pumpkin and pecan pie! Holidays are meant to be special and a bit indulgent anyway.
Enjoy our pie traditions!
(I love how pumpkin pie cracks in the middle after you knife test it- makes it feel all homemade)
Libby's Famous Pumpkin Pie
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp cloves
2 large eggs
15 oz 100% pure pumpkin
1 can evaporated milk
1 unbaked deep dish pie crust
Mix sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves.
Beat eggs in a large bowl.
Stir pumpkin and sugar and spice mixture.
Gradually stir in evaporated milk.
Pour into pie shell- always place your pie tin on a baking sheet just in case of overflow!
Bake in a preheated 425 degree oven for 15 minutes.
Reduce temp to 350 degrees and bake 40-50 minutes or until knife comes out clean.
Cool 2 hours. serve immediately or refrigerate.
(My aunt advised not to freeze this pie as the crust and filling will separate.)
Miriam Parker's Pie Crust
clipped from the Pgh Post Gazette
makes a double crust pie 9-inch
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2/3 cup shortening
7 Tbs cold water (I add ice)
I combined the first 3 ingredients right in my food processor. Pulsed to combine- until shortening was incorporated into crumbles. Then through the shoot, I added the water, one at a time until the dough came together nicely. Alternately, you can combine the first 3 ingredients in a large bowl using 2 knives to cut the shortening into the flour. Sprinkle 2 Tbs of water and toss with a fork until you've incorporated all 7 Tbs. Form into a ball.
Divide the dough in half- put some flour on your work surface and rolling pin- and roll out the dough from the center to the edge to create the crust. Repeat for the top crust.
No need to refrigerate this dough as it's so easy to roll out and very flaky once baked!**see note
Now that you have your pie dough all ready to go, make this delicious pecan pie!
(was trying to get a little artsy with my acorns made out of extra pie dough)
Aunt Lynnie's Pecan Pie
2/3 cup karo syrup
1 cup dark brown sugar (I use light cause that's what I always have on hand)
1/3 tsp salt
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla
Mix the above ingredients well, then add:
3 whole eggs, slightly beaten
1 cup peans- heaping cup - mix with above and pour into your pie crust
If you think it needs a few more pecans, go ahead and add them- I often do. You can leave them whole or chop them roughly. Your call!
Bake at 350 degrees for 40-55 minutes. It should be 200 degrees in the center of the pie. You'll know when it's done just by looking at it, right? I never take it's temperature, but it was part of the family recipe so I wrote it down!
**While Miriam's dough was tremendously easy, I was not loving how it didn't brown at all. I'm going to have to listen to my mum and just make her pie dough recipe. Why it's taken me sooooo long to listen, I don't know!