Spiced pumpkin pie
Pumpkin pie isn’t a common sight in New Zealand, but it should be! I’m chuffed with this recipe – I created it for an impromptu dinner with friends and it went down a treat. Just the right amount of creamy pumpkin, crumbly pastry, buttery coconut crumb and warming spices. You can make your own pastry if you like, but there’s nothing wrong with using store-bought sweet shortcrust, the best quality as your budget allows (specialty food stores stock great pastries). If you’re wondering why on earth there is chilli in the recipe, don’t worry I haven’t gone batty – you can hardly detect it’s there but it goes well with the pumpkin and just adds a nice hum of heat. Leave out the crumble if you can’t be bothered, the plain pie will still be delicious.
Sweet shortcrust pastry (bought or make your own)
500g peeled pumpkin, chopped into pieces
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups cream
4 egg yolks
2 tsp pure vanilla essence or paste
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp powdered ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp powdered cloves
Tiny pinch chilli powder or cayenne pepper
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup oats
1/2 cup shredded or dessicated coconut
1/2 cup ground almonds
1/4 cup brown sugar
100g butter, melted
Preheat the oven to 200c fan bake (or 220 non fan bake).
Line a 26cm-30cm flan or pie dish with the pastry, then refrigerate the whole thing for 30 minutes. Prick the bottom of the pastry with a fork 15-20 times. Line the dish with baking paper cut to size so it goes up the sides, and pour in baking beads/pie weights (or use rice, beans or lentils). Bake in the oven for about 10 minutes or until the sides are golden. Remove the baking paper and rice/beads and replace in the oven for another 5 minutes or so to colour the bottom.
Reduce the oven temperature to 160c fan bake.
To make the crumble, mix everything together in a bowl.
Place the pumpkin in a saucepan with the sugars, cream and butter. Cover and simmer until the pumpkin is cooked through and mushy enough to whisk smooth (around 15-20 minutes). Cool slightly, then add the eggs and vanilla and whisk to combine. Sift in the dry ingredients and whisk until smooth. Pour the filling into the prepared pie dish and sprinkle with the crumble. Bake in the oven for about 45 minutes, or until the centre is cooked through – it shouldn’t wobble at all. Leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before serving.
Serve your pie slices warm with whipped cream, ice cream, or my favourite – sweetened Greek yoghurt! Great cold in school lunches the next day too.