Why pumpkin pie – and not a Hubbard or an acorn squash pie? Just about any hard squash will make an excellent pie, but because pumpkins are pretty bland and flavorless as a stand-alone squash, they get relegated to fillings for pies and breads. Most winter squashes are pretty tasty on their own so why waste them in a pie! Someone long ago figured out that if you mix enough sugar and spices with the pumpkin you get a darn good dessert. And besides it’s good for you.
To make the pie shown, I cut a couple of garden pie pumpkins in half & cleaned out the seeds. They were then baked in a covered roasting pan at 400 degrees for about an hour until soft. I got out my trusty old Foley Food Mill and enlisted Noel’s expertise at turning the crank to puree the pumpkin pulp.
Fresh cooked pumpkin is a lot moister than what comes out of a can so I just cut back on the amount of liquid normally called for in recipes. In fact this year I replaced the usual milk with coconut milk. I had 2/3 of a can leftover from a coconut curry that I had made earlier in the week and thought why not give it a try. It worked very well. With all the strong spices in the pie you don’t really notice the difference unless you’re looking for it.
Basically I started with the standard pumpkin pie recipe from an old Better Homes and Gardens cookbook and branched out from there. E-mail me if you want an exact recipe but cooking is an experiment waiting to happen – so what are you waiting for??