Okay, so admittedly, the only thing cowboy about this pie is that I made it in a cast iron pan. I have this love for cast iron that is almost visceral. Something about using classic cookware and thinking about how people have been using the same things for generations. (That all being said, you can just as easily make this pie in a pie dish, but where’s the fun in that?)
Cowboys aside, this pumpkin pie recipe is perhaps the fussiest that I could have found. It was one of those days when my mind was so busy and overrun with various ideas and thoughts that the only sufficient therapy was a fussy recipe. But once you try it, you too will agree that it was worth the struggle. The recipe is from Smitten Kitchen and before that, from Cook’s Illustrated.
Cowboy Pumpkin Pie
(makes 1 pie, to make both the small and large cast iron pan pies, I doubled the recipe)
Pie Crust (your favorite recipe or store bought)
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
3 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin purée
1 cup drained candied yams or sweet potatoes
3/4 cups sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 1/2 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. salt
Preheat oven to 400 ° F
1.) Roll out dough and place in pie dish. Cut off excess crust leaving about 1/2 an inch of dough over the edge. Roll the extra dough back into the dish and then, using your forefingers, press the dough to create a fluted edge. Refrigerate pie dough for 15 minutes.
2.) Whisk cream, eggs, milk, yolks, and vanilla together.
3.) In a heavy-bottomed pot mix pumpkin purée, yams, sugar, maple syrup, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Bring to a bubbling boil over medium heat for 5-7 minutes.
4.) After refrigerating dough, line with tin foil and fill with pie weights. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove pie weights and continue to bake until golden brown, if needed. (15 minutes was enough for my crust)
5.) Continue stirring pumpkin mixture, and mashing the yams against the side of the pan. Don’t worry if there are still some chunks left in the mixture. After boiling, lower to a simmer and continue cooking and stirring for 10-15 minutes.
6.) Remove pot from heat and begin slowing whisking in cream mixture. Strain mixture through medium to fine mesh strainer. Use the back of a spoon or ladle to mash excess purée through the strainer. Re-whisk mixture and pour into warm pie crusts. Place pie on a rimmed baking sheet to protect oven. Bake pie for 10 minutes at 400° F . Rotate pie and lower heat to 300° F and continue to bake for 20-30 minutes. ( Timing is for a normal pie dish, my pie was much deeper in the cast iron pan and needed to cook for about 20 more minutes). When the pie is done, the edges should be set and a thermometer inserted in the center should be 175°.
7.) Cool pie for 2-3 hours before serving. The filling will continue to set and cook after being removed from the oven.
P.S. Do you like the cameo made by our DIY Turkey Print Apron?