Pumpkin Pie

Vietnamese food

     This recipe is adapted from The Pumpkin Pie with Ginger of the White House Pastry Chef Roland Mesnier. He stated, it is a presidential favorite for 25 years. Do you think it good? just try and see. The amount of sugar is lesser than most pumpkin pies of course-he is a french pastry chef and the spices are dial down so the pumpkin flavor is dominant.


Crust:  make two 9-in crusts, use 1/2 if make 1 crush
   2 1/2 cups (315 grams) flour
   1 tablespoon (15 grams) sugar
   1 teaspoon (5 grams) table salt
   2 sticks (8 ounces, 225 grams tablespoons or 1 cup) unsalted butter, very cold, cut into small cubes
   1/4-1/2 cup ice water
   2 large eggs
   3 large egg yolks
   1 tsp vanilla
   1/2 cup sugar
   1/4 tsp salt
   1 cup heavy cream
   1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin puree
   3/4 tsp cinnamon
   1/2 tsp ground ginger
   1/8 tsp ground clove
   1 cup heavy cream
   1 1/2 Tbs powder sugar or maple syrupr
   2 Tbs chopped crystallized ginger (optional)
   1 tsp unflavored gelatin for stabilizing whipped cream (optional)


  1. In a food processor, add flour, salt, sugar, and butter.  Pulse until the mixture resembles the coarse meal with some pea size pieces of butter .  Stop and sprinkle 1/4 cup water over the mixture at once,  then pulse a few more time until the dough is still crumbly but hold together when squeezes with fingers.  If it is too dry add more water by 1 Tbs at a time.  Transfer half atop of a plastic wrap (still crumbly),  form into 3/4-in thick dish and wrap in plastic wrap . Refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to three days.  If refrigerate more than 1 hour, take the dough out for 5-10 minutes before rolling.
  2. Roll one dish in a 12 -in round between two wax or plastic layers and place it in a pie dish.Trim dough at the rim at of the pan.  Freeze for 30 minutes.  
  3. Preheat oven to 425 oF. Prick the dough with a folk at 1/2-in interval all over the dough surface. Place the pie dough pan in a rimmed baking sheet.  Crumble a piece of parchment paper or foil (a little bit large than the dough surface), then open it up and place over the dough snugly   Add the pie weight or dried beans up to the rim of the pan. Bake 15 minutes, remove the bean and parchment paper.  Use the oven mitt or a spoon to press down any bubbles against the pan.  Bake 10 minutes more until golden brown.  Remove from the oven or just pull the rack out 1/2 way.  Turn the heat down to 375 oF   
  4. Prepare the filling while the shell is baking.  In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, egg yolks, and vanilla together.  Whisk in sugar, salt, spices and cream until well blended.  Whisk in pumpkin puree
  5. Immediately pour the filling into the hot pie shell.  Bake until  the filling looks puffing, lightly cracked around the edge and the knife insert  near the center comes out clean about 45 minutes to one hour or test by the temperature in the center reach to 175 oF. The center should still wiggle like gelatin when gently shake the pan but do not shake the pan during baking process.
  6. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool for 2-3 hours.  Refrigerate uncover up to 3 days. 
  7. When ready to serve, whip cold cream until soft peak add sugar and whip until it holds stiff peaks.  Decorate pie with whipped cream around the edge and candied ginger if use or stabilize whipped cream with gelatin if you want to make whipped cream in advance.

Stabilize whipped cream

   In a small bowl, mix 1 tsp gelatin with 1 Tbs water.  Then microwave 10-15 seconds until the gelatin dissolved.  Set aside.  Whip 1 cup of heavy cream until soft peak add maple syrup or powder sugar and continue whipping to barely stiff.  Add melted gelatin at once then whip until hold a stiff peaks.

      When rolling the dough, try to rotate it 45 degree around like rolling in a circle motion which helps to keep the dough intact.  Occasionally lift of the dough up to ease the rolling movement.  May roll dough on a floured surface too.
         We can pour the filling into a unbaked pie shell at step 2 and bake as above.

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