I know I know. The holidays are over and we’re all scrambling to find our dusty, lost in the closet juicer that will help us fit back into our pre-Thanksgiving jeans. But the abandonment of all things deliciously baked every January makes me a little sad. I know it’s time to get back on track, but what if we just cut back on our baked favorites? Not buying it? Going for an all out cleanse? Fine. But I MUST post this. If nothing else, save this recipe for next Thanksgiving, and enjoy some lovingly created pie photography. This is yet another recipe created by the goddess Sally over at Sally’s Baking Addiction. She is my guru as you know, and this recipe nails down that love. I wasn’t nearly as successful in the shaping of my pie crust as Sally is, but that’s why I love her recipes. I have a chance to learn SO MUCH from one baking adventure. Before this pie – get ready – I didn’t like pumpkin pie. It’s true. I thought it was bland. And had an unappetizing texture. I decided to try this, because my family is pumpkin pie obsessed, and I wanted to satisfy, so it was a leap of faith. Let me tell you that this pie is SO flavorful, SO fluffy and creamy, and SO comforting, that I’ll be making it for years to come. Enjoy.
The Only Pumpkin Pie You’ll Ever Need
Recipe Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction
2 Pie Crusts – Use Sally’s Recipe – It can’t be beat.
1 Can Pumpkin Puree – 15oz
3 large eggs
1 1/4 cups packed dark brown sugar
1 Tablespoon Cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 1/2 teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon Ground Ginger
1/4 teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
1 cup Heavy Cream
1/4 cup Milk
1 large egg – beaten with 1 teaspoon of milk
1 Tablespoon cinnamon sugar mixture for sprinkling
1 cup Fresh Cranberries
2 cups Granulated Sugar
1 cup Water
Homemade Whipped Cream
8 oz Cream Cheese
1/4 cup Powdered Sugar
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1/2 teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice
2 cups Heavy Whipping Cream
Please read entire recipe before starting, as some steps must be done in advance!
Pie Crust –
Make pie crusts using Sally’s recipe.
Sugared Cranberries –
Place cranberries in a large bowl. Pour water and 1 cup of sugar into a medium saucepan and bring to a boil, whisking to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat and allow syrup to cool for 5 to 10 minutes. Pour syrup over cranberries, stirring to coat. Move bowl to the refrigerator to chill overnight.
After cranberries have chilled for at least 6 hours, and the syrup has thickened considerably, drain the cranberries to remove excess syrup, and add 1 cup of sugar. Stir to coat, and pour out onto a large piece of parchment paper. Spread cranberries into one well-spaced layer and allow to dry 2 to 4 hours.
Pumpkin Pie –
Preheat oven to 350.
In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, eggs, and brown sugar. While whisking, add cornstarch, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, black pepper, heavy cream, and milk. Continue to whisk until fully combined.
If making Sally’s beautiful pie crust leaves, take out one ball of chilled pie dough, and roll out on a well floured board or countertop. Dough should be about 1/8 inch thick. Use leaf cookie cutters (or a paring knife and lots of creativity) to cut out leaf shapes. Score the tops of the leaves with veins for detail. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and place the pie dough leaves in a single, well spaced layer. Coat leaves with the egg and milk mixture, and sprinkle lightly with cinnamon sugar mixture. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes until golden. Cool on wire rack.
Preheat oven to 375.
On a floured board or countertop, roll out the 2nd ball of pie dough into an even 12 inch circle. Allow dough to rest for 5 minutes. Delicately lay your pie dough in a 9 inch deep-dish pie plate. Trim any extra pie dough, and either leave plain, crimp, or tuck your pie dough edges. Brush the edges of the crust with remaining egg and milk mixture. Fill pie dough with pie weights and bake for 10 minutes.
Remove pie weights, and fill your partially baked pie crust 3/4 of the way full with the pumpkin pie filling. Sally recommends using any leftover filling to make mini pies later! Place pie back in the oven for 60 minutes. After 20 or 30 minutes (and a nicely golden pie crust) cover the crust with a pie shield or aluminum foil to prevent over browning. When done, the pie should be set at the outer 2 inches, and slightly wobbly in the center.
Allow pie to cool for a minimum of 3 hours after baking and before decorating with the, now dried and ready, sugared cranberries and pie crust leaves.
While pie is cooling, make homemade whipped cream. Beat cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla, and pumpkin pie spice on low until fully combined. Beat on high for 1 full minute until whipped and smooth. In a separate bowl, whisk chilled heavy whipping cream to stiff peaks. Add cream cheese mixture to this and beat on low until the ingredients are just combined. Store in a sealed container in the refrigerator until pie is ready to be served.