Monday, December 6, 2010

Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Pie Eater

I just think it's funny that while my friend G is posting about her super healthy smoothies, I'm posting about pie. Really, though, the change is G has been amazing to watch and is very inspiring. There have been some nutritional changes in our home that have made a difference. But this pie is not one of them. This pie is just yummy without being the least bit good for you.

It's no secret that the holidays are not what they should be. So many issues, so little time. Except on the other blog. There's lots of time for griping over there. Anyway, this is my little bit of comfort over the holidays. I also made my brussel sprouts. I will not even tell you what response that got. On with pie!!

This came from Quick and Simple magazine. It is one of my favorites. It looks complicated, but is actually super simple. If you could see the pic! That's what got me. Hubby and I were standing in the grocery store check out line one day and there it was. All the lights went dim, the spotlight shone on the cover, the choir started singing. I didn't buy the magazine, but hubby had to pry it from my hands. A couple of days later, hubby came home with the magazine. That is one good man. So, thank hubby when you see him. He rules!! This is done in three parts, but don't be intimidated. One step at a time. It's well worth it.

Pumpkin-Cheesecake Pie


1 cup chocolate grahams, crushed
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In an ungreased 8 inch springform pan or 9 inch, deep dish pie pan, stir together graham crumbs and butter with fork until moist. Press mixture down with your hands to cover bottom of the dish. Bake crust 10 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

Cheesecake Filling:

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup diced, candied ginger (optional)

Raise oven temp to 425 degrees. Beat cream cheese (because it was bad, sorry couldn't help it) with an electric mixer until smooth, a few lumps is fine. Beat in egg, vanilla, and candied ginger (they were bad, too LOL). Spoon mixture into cooled pie crust.

Pumpkin Filling:

3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground allspice
15 oz can pure pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling
1 cup light cream or evaporated milk
3 large eggs, lightly beaten (they weren't as bad as the cream cheese-giggle, giggle)
whipped cream, for garnish (optional)
chocolate chips or shavings, for garnish optional)

In a speparate medium bowl, whisk together sugar, salt, and spices. Add pumpkin, cream or evaporated milk, and eggs. Whisk gently until smooth, trying not to incorporate too much air. Carefully spoon pumpkin mixture on top of cheesecake layer.

Place pie in oven and bake 15 minutes. Turn oven down to 350 degrees and bake another 30 to 40 minutes. The pie is done when it looks set but still wobbles slightly in the center when you jiggle it. Remove pie from oven and let cool to room temp. Refrigerate until serving time, or at least 3 hours. Top with whipped cream and chocolate shavings if desired.

You know I cannot leave well enough alone so here's some things I do. If you don't have time for the crust or have a pie pan, buy a pre-made crust. Just make sure it's a large crust or deep dish. This pie can get pretty tall so you will need the room. I don't add candied ginger because I would only be buying it for this pie. I'm sure it's wonderful with it, but I can't comment on that. If you have pumpkin that you have made, use it. I bet fresh pumpkin would do amazing things for this pie. I use evaporated milk. I don't use all of the can, but I save the left overs and use them to make mashed potatoes. That's how my mom used to make potatoes and they are so yummy. One thing you can do to add to the cheesecake layer is chocolate chips. Add them after you mix the cream cheese layer and before you add it to the crust. You could even add them to the pumpkin pie layer, too. Good grief, that's good. I don't have all those spices for the pumpkin layer, but I do have pumpkin pie spice. That's just all those spices together in one layer. I add the amounts of the individual spices and add that much pumpkin pie spice.

That's it. It looks like alot, but it really isn't. One step at a time. I will say it's a really long three hours waiting for this pie. I make it the day before, put it in the back of the frig, and try to forget about it until it's time to eat. That's the hard part.

Merry CHRISTmas. Have a great day.

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