Tuesday, October 19, 2010

{TWD} Caramel Pumpkin Pie

As much as I enjoy baking with apples - and pears - to me the real star of the autumnal ingredient lineup is pumpkin! Last year, the shortage of canned pumpkin in the US cast a distressing shadow over the baking landscape, and my local grocery store is still feeling the effects of the limited pumpkin production. Canned pumpkin is kept behind closed doors in the customer service department, where it is doled out two cans per customer. Obviously, pumpkin is not a thing to be squandered on subpar recipes! This week's Tuesdays With Dorie selection, Caramel Pumpkin Pie, carried an added burden. Not only did I have to decide if it was worthy from a taste perspective but also whether it merited a can of my precious pumpkin hoard. But with homemade caramel stirred into the usual pumpkin pie ingredients, this recipe certainly sounded like it would be worthwhile.

I got a little carried away with the whipped cream, but it was delicious
with this pie

n.o.e.'s notes:

- This fall dessert was chosen for the group this week by Janell of the blog Mortensen Family Memoirs and you can find the recipe on her informative post.

- Pumpkin pie might be my very favorite desset. The standard recipe for pumpkin pie at our house calls for molasses and tons of spice.

- I made a full sized pie and followed the recipe exactly.

- In making the caramel, Dorie gives the option of stirring in rum or cider. I used some of my King Arthur boiled cider but reduced the quantity because the flavor is so strong.

- I also baked a gluten-free version of the pie, with a nut crust and I caramelized palm sugar for the filling. The palm sugar was much more difficult to caramelize this time around, but it finally turned a very dark brown. This strong caramel carried through with an almost burnt taste in the filling of the finished pie.

the verdict:

I served this pie to my book group and it was a huge, huge, huge success. Three of my tasters don't like pumpkin pie but each liked this enough to eat a generous slice. One is planning to bake this recipe for her Thanksgiving dinner.

I found the pie to be an unusual, lightly spiced, sweet, and quite enjoyable take on the classic pumpkin pie. It is not likely to unseat our molasses-and-spice family favorite pumpkin pie, but it was definitely worth using a can of pumpkin.

gluten free version of pie. The deeply caramelized palm sugar made the
filling darker and more intense.


Katrina said...

I thought this pie was great.
Last year when the pumpkin shortage was going on, one store near me had a bunch, so I bought like 10 cans of it. Still have 4 left now. Perfect food storage item.

cocoa and coconut said...

So lush and smooth!

Di said...

No such thing as too much whipped cream. =P That looks delicious. I didn't get to it yet; probably for Thanksgiving. I have a feeling J will love it. Oh, and I really need to order some of that boiled cider...

Nickki said...

This was my first attempt at pumpkin pie and I just loved it. You can never have too much whipped cream..;-)

Unknown said...

I'm surprised there's still a pumpkin shortage by you Nancy! When you head up this way next month I can stock up at my warehouse club and share a bunch with you - we've got plenty last I checked. Your pie looks perfect - glad it was a hit at book club. I agree with your tasters, I don't love pumpkin pie but this one was good.

TeaLady said...

Plenty of pumpkin down here. I can send some if you cannot find enough for the season. :)

Pies looks delicious. We really liked this one.

too much whipped cream. I. Don't. Think. So!!!

Cathy said...

Wow - can't believe they are doling out the pumpkin cans two at a time! Have you had to resort to bringing the first two cans to your car, throwing on a trench, some dark shades and a fedora, and going back in for two more cans? It's pumpkin baking season - we will do what we need to do to score our pumpkin! So glad this was a hit with your tasters! I (I'm going to use a harsh word here) hated this pie, but my tasters seemed to like it, so I'm sure it is some flaw on my taste buds. Your pie looks gorgeous!

The Mortensens said...

Okay, how did I not notice that there was a shortage of canned pumpkin last year? Everyone seems to be talking about it.

Anyway, I'm glad the pie was worth the can of pumpkin! I'll have to try your family family favorite. While I really liked this one, I'm still searching for the perfect pumpkin pie recipe that's not out of a can!

Thanks for baking along with me this week!

Kayte said...

Looks wonderful, guys here would say there is no such thing as getting carried away with whipped cream! Your tasters were right, this was really good and I am not a big pumpkin fan. I liked the taste of caramel and the slight rum flavor. Definitely a repeat, thanks for encouraging me to get it made!

Judy said...

We don't seem to have a shortage here, but the price per can is very high. I used one of my Trader Joe's cans for this pie. I think if the caramel had been cooked less, I would have like the pie more.

I plan to make my favorite pumpkin pie recipe this coming weekend. It's dark and spicy, although it doesn't contain molasses like yours does. I'll have to try your version as well.

Welcome to our crazy blessed life said...

I wonder how many pumpkin pie lovers hated this pie and pumpkin pie haters loved this pie. I liked it and hate pumpkin pie.... Glad the book club liked it and nice subs for the gluten free! :)