pastry crust

3 cups flour
1 1/2 cup vegetable shortening (or butter), not melted
1 tsp salt
1 egg
5 Tb water
1 Tb vinegar

Combine dry ingredients first, then add shortening/butter with a fork. All this is much easier in a food processor, if you have one. Mix until it resembles coarse meal (15 seconds in the FP). Add the egg, water & vinegar until the dough holds together when pinched. If necessary add more water. Do not process more than 30 seconds.

Turn the dough onto your work surface and gather in a ball. This is enough for 3 single crusts, so you can divide into 3 balls, and wrap for later. The easiest thing to do is flatten them into a disk, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30-60 minutes before using. This will chill the butter and relax the gluten in the flour. You can also freeze them for later too.

After chilling, place on a lightly floured surface and roll into a ball. Continue lifting as you roll to prevent sticking. Roll from the center outwards. Fold the flattened crust in half and gently transfer to a 9 inch pie dish. Finish the edges as you desire!

pumpkin puree

To make your own Pumpkin Puree
Choose a nice pumpkin from your local pumpkin patch, or grow your own!! *Sugar Pie, Baby Bear or Cheese Pumpkins work the best for making fresh puree. A 5-7 pound pumpkin will make 2 pies easily. Wash your pumpkin and cut in half (lengthwise). Remove all the seeds & stringy fibers with a spoon or canning lid. Place face down on a baking sheet with a lip (add about 1/2 cup water). Bake at 350F (177C) for 45-75 minutes (depending on the size) until it can be easily pierced with a knife/fork. Remove from the oven and cool long enough so that you can scoop out the pumpkin flesh without burning yourself OR remove skin with a knife while still on the baking sheet. Blend in a blender or food processor until very smooth. We like to strain the excess liquid with a cheesecloth or collander. Freeze or can for future use, or use right away!

pumpkin pie

  • 2 cups pumpkin puree OR 1 (15 ounce) canned pumpkin
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk OR heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • OR 2 tsp pumpkin spice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust
Preheat oven to 450F. Whisk eggs in a large bowl. Add pumpkin, evaporated milk, spices and salt in medium bowl until smooth. Pour into crust. Place unbaked pie on a large baking sheet/pan to catch any spills. Bake 15 minutes at this temperature, in the bottom 1/3 of your oven.

Reduce oven temp to 350F and continue baking 35-40 minutes or until knife inserted 1 inch from crust comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack and enjoy!! Top with whipped topping.

Makes one 9-inch pie!

Include a pecan & gingersnap layer in your crust!!
1/4 cup pecans, toasted
1/4 cup gingersnap cookies, crushed

Toast the pecans, and process them until finely ground. Process the cookies, and combine. Press the mixture evenly on the bottom of the pie crust before you add the pie filling. Try it sometime!