Kitchen Concoctions: Thanksgiving Traditions

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thanksgiving Traditions

I’m a traditionalist when it comes to Thanksgiving (and most holidays for that matter. (BTW, how was your Thanksgiving?)

I like the same food (always), mainly because I don’t get to eat it any other time of year. At Thanksgivign, we must have my Great Grandmother’s cornbread stuffing, a smoked or fried turkey, classic green bean casserole (cream of what soup and all), King Hawaiian rolls, sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes, a green salad and a fruit salad.

Then of course desserts! For us growing up it was pies galore! My Mom was always responsible for the pies at Thanksgiving and she always made a different pie for each person (at least that’s how it always felt). Pecan pie, blueberry pie, apple pie, chocolate pudding pie, sometimes cherry pie and of course pumpkin pie!


Since we spent Thanksgiving with Eric’s family this year, we divided up the cooking. When no one volunteered to bring pumpkin pie I knew I had to be the one who made it, because really, it is just plain un-American to not have pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving!

I did have to break from tradition and use a recipe (other than the one on the back of the Libby’s Pumpkin Puree). The recipe below is similar to the Libby’s classic but uses brown sugar instead of white (I think the brown sugar pairs better with the pumpkin flavor) and uses 3 whole eggs (instead of 2) for a rich pie custard. Even with just these slight changes, Eric proclaimed this the best pumpkin pie ever and he hates pumpkin pie.

So even though Thanksgiving has come and gone for this year, bookmark this recipe for Christmas or for Thanksgiving next year (or if you are my little brother your birthday in the middle of August)!


Traditional Pumpkin Pie
Printable Version
Prep Time: 15 minutes Bake Time: 50-55 minutes Serves 8

1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin
3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
1 frozen pie crust, thawed
Whipped cream, for serving

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Fit thawed pie dough circle into a 9-inch deep-dish pie dish, leaving a 1-inch overhang. Fold edges under.

Meanwhile, whisk pumpkin, sugar, cornstarch, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, vanilla, eggs, milk, in a large bowl.

Transfer pie dish to a rimmed baking sheet, and pour pumpkin mixture into cooled crust. Bake pie for 15 minutes. Then reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and continue baking pie for another 40 to 50 minutes. (If crust browns too quickly, tent edges with a strip of foil folded in half lengthwise.) Let cool in pie dish on a wire rack. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 6 hours (preferably overnight). Serve chilled with whipped cream.

Adapted from Martha Stewart Living, November 2008

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