Every Thanksgiving I make a raspberry pie because it is both my Dad and my daughter’s favorite. And I make a pumpkin pie because I happen to like pumpkin pie and because I just think pumpkin pie is mandatory at Thanksgiving. The pie on the left was amazing! The pie on the right. Well that’s another story. But I need to backtrack a bit to the crust. A good crust is the secret to a good pie. The crust recipe I have is from a dear family friend, Peg Johnson. She graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in Home Economics. She has passed away but she lives on in the margins of my Better Homes and Gardens Cook Book. Penned on page 230, at the top of the Pastry section, is her recipe for Never Fail Pie Crust.
Remember this book? I see it in antique stores all the time. I got mine as a gift in 1971. It has a burn mark on the back cover and some of the pages stick totgether but I still use it.
Never Fail Pie Crust
3 cups AP flour
1 1/4 cups shortening
1 tsp salt
1 egg well beaten
5 T cold water
1 T white vinegar
Cut the shortening into the flour. Peg used a pastry cutter. I use my food processor.
Combine the beaten egg, water and vinegar. Pour liquid into flour mixture all at once. Blend with a spoon until flour is well moistened.
Divide the dough into 3 equal discs. The dough can be rolled out immediately or can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
You might be able to get four crusts from this recipe but I give myself a little wiggle room for bad edges or other rolling difficulties. Roll the crust out on a lightly floured surface and line the bottom of the pie pan with the crust.
Preheat the oven to 350.
6 cups raspberries
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 T cornstarch
2 T tapioca
2 T butter
Combine the raspberries, sugar, cornstarch and tapioca in a large bowl and gently stir. Allow them to sit for 10 minutes or so. Pour the berries into the prepared pie crust. Cut butter into small pats and put on top of the raspberry filling.
Roll out the top crust, cut slits with a paring knife, and crimp the edges. Sprinkle with a little white sugar. Bake for 50-55 minutes until the fruit is bubbly and the crust is golden brown. To avoid drips in your oven put the pie on a cookie sheet lined with foil.
Mmmmmmm. This pie was great! Served with a little whipping cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Now let’s talk about that pumpkin pie. I had purchased a couple of little sugar pumpkins that I used for fall table decorations and decided to make them into my traditional pumpkin pie. Waste not, want not.
As I was seeding these little babies and getting them ready to roast to fork tender goodness in the oven my dad said, can’t you buy pumpkin in a can? I said, of course I can but this will be homemade. From scratch. It will be better than pumpkin in a can! I should have listened to my dad and retrieved a can of pumpkin from my pantry. Mistake number one.
Preheat oven to 400.
Pumpkin Pie Filling
2 cups pumpkin
12 oz can evaporated milk
2 beaten eggs
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp ginger
1 1/2 tsp nutmeg or mace
1 tsp cloves
1 T flour
Quarter the pumpkins, scrape the seeds and arrange on a baking sheet lined with foil or parchment. Bake at 350 for 45-50 minutes or until fork tender. Once the pumpkin is done scrape the meat into a bowl and discard the skins.
Purée the pumpkin in a food processor.
Doesn’t this look beautiful!?? Mistake number two. I should have tasted the pumpkin at this point. But I did not.
Combine the pumpkin with the egg, evaporated milk, brown sugar, flour and spices and whisk together until well combined. Pour into the prepared crust.
I had scraps of crust left over so I copied a friend’s idea and cut little leaves out with a cookie cutter and lined the edge. I actually had to add the fancy crust pieces part way through the baking process because the filling is too runny initially. Bake for 40 minutes or until a knife inserted 1 inch from the crust comes out clean.
There is no picture of this pie on a plate with whipping cream. I ate a small slice and proclaimed it too awful for human consumption. However, this is a good recipe for pumpkin pie provided that you use 2 cups of canned pumpkin. Next year I’ll listen to my Dad.
NOTE: In the future I will use my little sugar pie pumpkins for table decorations only and I will use Libby’s pumpkin for my pie.
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