Saturday, September 18, 2010

pumpkin, pumpkin pies

I love, Love, LOVE halloween


when i see candy corn in the grocery
i get giddy,
my palms sweat
i swoon

candy corn 
is my official cue
holiday season
is in full swing

i begin costume planning
not forgetting to
nag hubster
because a girl needs her supplies
i have him hauling this and gathering that 
from storage
to our over-stuffed abode

we do it up
there are even changes
in the kitchen
broth becomes stew
steamed veggies are over-shadowed by slow roasted roots
and dessert is shaped, colored and coaxed to look the part

it just does
because that is how the dough rolls
pumpkin, pumpkin pies
this filling is not the same as you would use for a traditional pie as it needs to be firm enough to sit on the pastry without oozing 
pie dough
*use store bought if you like
1lb 4oz all purpose flour
13 oz cold unsalted butter (or 1/2 butter 1/2 shortening)
1 tsp kosher salt
2 Tbs granulated sugar
5 oz ice cold water
whisk together the flour, salt and sugar,  cut in butter until it is very well incorporated, resembling cornmeal. slowly pour in the water bringing the dough together. do not overwork. bring the dough just together and form into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator a minimum of 4 hours.  this dough is less flaky than a traditional pie crust. i find that element important as these are hand held pies and need to be firm and crisp.
pumpkin filling
15 oz pureed pumpkin (not already spiced pie filling)
6 oz cream cheese--room temperature
1 large egg yolk
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 Tbs molasses (optional--if not using, increase sugar by 2 Tbs)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground clove
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
mix all ingredients together so they are smooth. refrigerate while you roll out the dough.
to assemble
roll out your dough as if you are making sugar cookies--approx 1/8" thick.  cut out pumpkin shapes using a large pumpkin shaped cookie cutter (mine is 5").  place a dollop of filling on 1/2 of the cut-outs--being sure not to over-fill.  brush a bit of egg on the edges and place a cut-out on top.  using the tines of a fork, press the edges together.  poke a few inconspicuous holes in the top pastry to allow for steam.  bake at 375 for about 25 minutes, or until the pastry is golden.
i use a simple confectioner's sugar and milk glaze tinted with food color.  place 1 cup of confectioner's sugar in a bowl and add a few tablespoons of milk until you get the consistency you are looking for.  add food coloring to desired tint.  if it seems to runny, add back a bit more confectioner's sugar.  glaze the cooled pies and let sit, uncovered, until they are set.


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