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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Classic Pumpkin Pie for Canadian Thanksgiving.

Pumpkin Pie is the traditional dessert for Canadian Thanksgiving Weekend.  Our Canadian customs were introduced to our Syrian family.  To the surprise of the youngest boy when he tasted the pie without the ice-cream, he exclaimed, "it's good!"

Yes, that is lard that I am blending into the flour for my pastry.  As I was making
 the pie pastry, I was thinking of my Mom and how she use to cut her fat into the pastry with two forks.  I remember first making pastry and following all the rules of everything being chilled, adding only 7 tablespoon of water.  The first time, Mom saw me make pastry she laughed as she said she broke all the rules. She told me how in a hot kitchen in a restaurant, there was no way she could keep everything cold.  Her pastry was flaky, light and delicious. I still don't think my pastry has reached that level.  Her pastry like butter tarts and pies were sent daily on a bus to another bus depot four hours away.   

Further to my Mom's cooking, my husband heard while at work in Winnipeg from a co-worker about this popular dining place in Northern Manitoba where the Hydro crew would go for a delicious lunch.  On hearing the name of the restaurant, my husband told the coworker, he should have stuck his head into kitchen as he would have recognized the cook!  Yes, in those days "Cooks" ran the kitchen, today they are referred to as "Chefs".  

I still chill the dough for about an hour, mainly for convenience

My Mom's pumpkin pie recipe written in my brother's old science scribbler.  This year there has been some dialogue on Facebook as to the differences in Canadian to American Thanksgivings.  According to Martha Stewart, Canadian use more spices in their Pumpkin Pie.  You can see this certainly is the case for me. Bring out the Cinnamon, Ginger, Cloves and Nutmeg!  An article in the New York Times looked at recipes across Canada, some certainly would not be considered a classic Thanksgiving dinner that focuses on Harvest.

And Brown sugar, is a must for this custard, although I have used half and half of brown sugar and molasses for a deeper colored pie.  Beat the eggs and add in the pumpkin puree.  This recipe uses up all the pureed pumpkin, 28 0z.  Mix the spices into the brown sugar. 

Then add the brown sugar into the pumpkin mix.   Although the recipe did not ask for Vanilla flavouring, I did add 2 Tablespoons of Maple Finished Rye. This has to be my favoured flavouring added to cakes or in this case pumpkin as it adds a lovely taste to the dessert.  

I like it when I can use up everything in the cans that have been open for this dessert.  Since there is two cups of liquid required for the above recipe, I used up all the evaporated milk and topped it with cream to make 2 cups, about 1/3 of cream. You can also use milk if you don't have cream.

Both recipes have the pie baked at a high temperature and then the temperature is lowered to cook the pie longer.  

Two pyrex pie pans were used, one smaller than the other. I did have enough for another pastry for a small pie. I could have made two larger size pies.  

Not being a baker, I learn from my baking experiences and research on the net. To me, I have never been bothered by the custard cracking.  In fact to me, it meant the custard was cooked.  However, when the larger pie did not seem to bake, I did google and find that the custard is cooked when the centre is still jiggly!  And, yes I bake a quiche at a high temperature for 30 to 40 minutes, depending on the size.  But as my Aunt Marion would say, "Bake until it looks Cooked!" 

Yes there was cracks in the custard, but who cared when one has tons of ice cream and whipped cream!!

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