Maple Pumpkin Pie

Wouldn’t life be so much easier if our pets helped out? You know, with laundry or dishes or sweeping…nothing major but totally helpful. I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately while packing up all my stuff. I’m moving this Saturday, and while I sweat and put stuff into boxes, my cat just sits there – unamused, and not helpful at all.

It’s plain and simply ungrateful, really. I feed her, change the waste that she deposits in a box each and every day, brush her, play with her and cuddle her…and she just sits there! The nerve….

Actually, while I was baking this pie, the last pie that will be made in my cute little apartment’s oven, the kitty strutted right up, and tried to dip her paw into the pumpkin filling bowl! Good heavens!

Anyway, I usually only make pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving, but I am seriously craving pie this week. Like an insane amount. Also, I’ve been seeing tons of awesome pumpkin recipes floating around on blogs, so I figured I might as well hop on the pumpkin train! And I’m soooo glad I did!

To make the crust, mix the flour, salt, and sugar together in a medium bowl.
With a pastry fork, mix the butter and shortening into the flour mixture (dough will resemble cottage cheese curds with some very small pieces of butter remaining, but there should be no uncoated flour).

Empty mixture into medium bowl. Sprinkle vodka and water over mixture. With rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and sticks together.

Flatten dough into 4-inch disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes. In this time you could go do your hair or practice a fishtail braid…whatever.

Preheat the oven to 375. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pie dough large enough to fit a 8″ or 9″ pie pan. Place it in your pie pan and put it in the freezer for about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile in a large bowl, mix together the pumpkin, sugar, maple syrup, cinnamon and salt.

Add the eggs and beat with a fork until mixed thoroughly.

Slowly add the half and half and maple extract, stir until combined.

It should look like this..

Remove pie crust from the freezer and fill the crust with the pumpkin filling.

Cover the edges of of the pie crust with foil or a pie crust sheild….uhhh…I guess I didn’t take a picture of that!

Bake for 35 minutes, then remove the foil and bake for an additional 35 minutes or until the center is set or when a tooth pick or a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool on a wire rack.

Enjoy! I did.

Maple Pumpkin Pie
Lightly adapted from The Hungry Housewife
Recipe makes 1 pie

Ingredients:
Pie Crust
1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (6 1/4 ounces)
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1tablespoon sugar
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter (3/4 stick), cut into 1/4-inch slices
1/4 cup chilled solid vegetable shortening , cut into 2 pieces
2 tablespoons vodka , cold
2 tablespoons cold water

Pie Filling
1 15 oz. can pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup half and half or whole milk
1 tablespoon maple extract

Directions:
Crust
Mix the flour, salt, and sugar together in a medium bowl.
With a pastry fork,two forks or your fingers, mix the butter and shortening into the flour mixture (dough will resemble cottage cheese curds with some very small pieces of butter remaining, but there should be no uncoated flour).
Empty mixture into medium bowl.
Sprinkle vodka and water over mixture. With rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and sticks together.
Flatten dough into 4-inch disk.
Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.

Pie:
Preheat the oven to 375.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pie dough large enough to fit a 8″ or 9″ pie pan.
Place it in your pie pan and put it in the freezer for about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile in a large bowl, mix together the pumpkin, sugar, maple syrup, cinnamon and salt.
Add the eggs and beat with a fork until mixed thoroughly.
Slowly add the half and half and maple extract, stir until combined.
Remove pie crust from the freezer and fill the crust with the pumpkin filling.
Cover the edges of of the pie crust with foil or a pie crust sheild.
Bake for 35 minutes, then remove the foil and bake for an additional 35 minutes or until the center is set or when a tooth pick or a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool on a wire rack.

Other awesome pumpkin recipes:
Pumpkin Spice Latte
Pumpkin Cinnamon Streusel Muffins
Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal by Mississippi Kitchen

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Nanny’s Butterscotch Pie

Oh my, Beautiful Butterscotch Pie.

My Nanny (another word for Grandmother in my family) makes the best butterscotch pie going. Since I was little I remember finishing my dinner quickly, and sitting patiently at the table until it was pie time. Butterscotch pie only comes out at special occasions like Thanksgiving and Christmas, and when it does I go wild for it. WILD I tell you. I could eat a whole pie and be completely content.

Since Thanksgiving (Canadian of course) is coming up, I thought I’d share my favorite dessert with you. A dessert that really means something to me. It reminds me of family, and how happy a simple meal could make us when I was a child. It reminds of a time when I wasn’t constantly worrying about scholarships and deadlines. This dessert is special to me, my favorite, and I hope you like it :)

First, prepare your crust in a 9-inch pie pan. My favorite pie crust recipe is by the Pioneer Woman, and I use it for ALL of my pies and most of my tarts. This filling recipe makes enough for one pie, so double the recipe if you need to make two.

To prepare the filling, separate your eggs, lightly beat yolks and set aside the whites (you’ll use these for the meringue later). In a double boiler, whisk together all of the filling ingredients until smooth. Cook over medium heat until thickened. Remove from heat and pour into your pre-baked pie shell.

Once you’ve poured your amazing concoction into your pie shell, you can start your meringue.

Immediately spread the meringue over the hot filling, anchoring it to the edge of the crust at all points. Place meringue VERY close to the crust, working inward.

Bake for 20 minutes (or until meringue has a nice brown top) at 350 degrees F. Let it cool on a wire rack and serve!

Nanny’s Butterscotch Pie
Makes filling for one 9-inch pie

Ingredients:
Perfect Pie Crust
1. Get the recipe and directions here.

Filling:
1 cup brown sugar
4 HEAPING tbsp all purpose flour
2 egg yolks
2 cups milk
1 tsp vanilla
2 tbsp butter

Meringue:
2 large egg whites (1/2 cup), at room temperature
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 cup superfine sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp vinegar

Directions:
1. Prepare your crust in a 9-inch pie pan, and preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2.To prepare the filling, separate your eggs, lightly beat yolks and set aside the whites (you’ll use these for the meringue later). In a double boiler, whisk together all of the filling ingredients until smooth. Cook over medium heat until thickened. Remove from heat and pour into your pre-baked pie shell.

3. To prepare meringue:
a) In a clean, grease free glass or metal bowl, beat egg whites on medium speed until foamy.
b) Add cream of tartar and beat until soft but definite peaks form.
c) Very gradually beat in sugar. Beat on high speed until the peaks are stiff and glossy, but not dry.
d) Add vanilla and vinegar.
e) Immediately spread the meringue over a hot pie filling, anchoring it to the edge of the crust at all points. Place meringue VERY close to the crust, working inward.

4. Bake for 20 minutes (or until meringue has a nice brown top), and cool on a wire rack.
5. Serve and enjoy!

*The pie can be stored for up to three days in the refridgerator.