Hello everybody! I'm Rob Schultz.
We are smack in the middle of fall, and that can only mean two things:
First, remember to set your clocks ahead one (1) hour every Sunday morning.
Second, it's pumpkin pie season!
I know. It's confusing. Those stores just stretch out the holidays. This picture was taken in August.
And as soon as Halloween is over, the aisles are going to be full of MLK-Day treats.
Let's be clear: the widest possible acceptable window for pumpkin pie is from Halloween to Christmas, centered right in on Thanksgiving. So what are you going to do about it?
Here's what you're not going to do. You’re not going to go purchase a ready-made pie for $5. We’re not going to have one of those factory-built, each-one-identical-to-the-last, crammed-full-of-sugar-and-artificial-flavors, might-as-well-be-a-Hostess-product pumpkin pies. And why not?
Because I, and by extension all of you, are adults. And that means that we have: a kitchen. Why throw money away on pies when we have a pie factory right where we live?
So let’s throw the store bought pie where it belongs, into the trash, and I’m going to show you how to turn an ordinary kitchen into a pumpkin pie.
Get a pumpkin. Not some terrible old carving pumpkin. Those aren’t tasty.
What you’re going to want is a nice gourmet baking pumpkin, fresh off the tree. I have a orchard in northern California that I like.
They’re right by the beach, and they specialize in organic pumpkins. And cheap! Usually not more than $33 each.
Now, if you’re thinking of making a whole pie, go ahead and get two or three.
They’ll pack it up for you in dry ice right on the spot so you can take it home, or you can have it delivered by helicopter.
You’re going to want to remove the umbillical cord. But you need to be careful, because you could very easily knock all the flavor right out of the pumpkin.
I recommend using a gourd hammer like this one here, which is carved from pumpkin wood. That means that it resonates at the same frequency as the pumpkins.
If for some reason you don’t already own one of these, you can pick one up for less than $70 from the williams-sonoma catalog. It pays for itself almost immediately.
Go ahead and cut into your pumpkin.
I use a pumpkin knife for this, because I’m not a savage.
Scoop out most of the internal organs. I like to spread out a lot of newspaper when I do this, to keep my kitchen clean.
Take special care to put the almonds aside. What you can do, (and this isn’t related to baking a pie,) is you can put the almonds on a baking sheet with a little salt,
Then throw those in the oven for an hour at 700º.
They plump right up when you cook 'em!
Honestly, they're so much better than the store brand, you won't even believe it.
While the oven's good and hot, let's throw the pumpkin in there. The purpose of this is to cook up all the pumpkin meat.
The best thing you can do here is make sure the oven light is working, or get a flashlight, get a chair, and maybe a family member or two if you want to go in shifts, and you’re going to watch that pumpkin.
A regular pumpkin is mostly water, but as we all know a watched pumpkin will not boil. However, an unattended pumpkin will boil almost immediately. In the industry of "cooking," we call "boiling away the water from a food," "making a reduction."
Now, there’s certainly no law against making a pumpkin reduction, but, it’s no good for the pie. As you can see here, I got distracted, and I had to start over.
Preparing the baked pumpkin meat.
You’re going to want to mash up the pumpkin meat.
This is also a good chance to add any spices or preservatives.
I usually add a little bit of sugar. Today, I used lobster bisque, for flavor.
Oh, I should have mentioned this earlier. We're going to need a pie crust to put all our mashed pumpkin meat into. So… bake a pie crust.
Bake the pie. Couldn't be easier. The oven practically does this step for you!
Now that's a homemade, all-organic, 100% natural-looking pumpkin pie. It's vegan (except for the lobster), it's healthy, it's perfect.
Just throw some reddi-wip on there and you're all set!
Who in their right mind would blow $4.99 on a store-bought pie when they could have this?
The savings? Impossible to calculate! The quality? Impossible to compare!
This is how you bake a pumpkin pie.
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