Pumpkin Pie with Fresh Ginger and Espresso
Updated Recipe for My Favorite Pumpkin Pie with EspressoI originally published this recipe for Pumpkin Pie with Espresso five years ago, but since then I have made a few tweaks that I believe are significant improvements. Please let me know what you think!
Even Better than Pumpkin Pie and a Cup of Coffee for BreakfastThere is something extraordinary about a slice of pumpkin pie and a great cup of coffee for breakfast the morning after Thanksgiving that puts a big smile on my face. My husband shakes his head every time I try to convince him pumpkin pie is a healthy breakfast choice.
Pumpkin and Coffee Are Meant For Each OtherOne Thanksgiving as my daughters and I were making our pumpkin pies, a light bulb went off and I added a shot of espresso to the pumpkin mixture. With great humility, I think this Pumpkin Pie with Espresso combo is nothing short of genius.
Espresso, Cream, Fresh Ginger and a Glug of Bourbon Take it Over the Top
For a great pumpkin pie skip the evaporated milk and ground ginger and replace it with heavy cream and fresh grated ginger. I use instant espresso powder. See my post for the easiest way to peel fresh ginger. I also add a little bourbon to the filling. My niece Madi, who went to Baking and Pastry school taught me a splash of bourbon enhances a lot of baked goods. Try a splash in this pumpkin pie. You won't be sorry.
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Don't Feel Guilty About Using Canned PumpkinIn my book canned pumpkin is great. It is consistently smooth and contains only pumpkin, no additives or preservatives. I typically buy organic canned pumpkin. Just make sure it is pure pumpkin you are buying and not pumpkin mix, which has sugar and all sorts of other stuff in it. For the fun of it, you can use fresh pumpkin, but for speed and a consistent product I vote canned. Especially on Thanksgiving when you have more than enough to do.
About CrustFor many years my daughter Margo made our pumpkin pies. I had nothing to do with it. My friend Tammy, who is the pie queen of our neighborhood, told Margo she never makes her pie crusts and always uses Pillsbury refrigerated pie crusts. After that, Margo stopped rolling her own crusts and used Pillsbury crusts are dependably good. Not quite as good as a great homemade pie crust, but they turn out consistently well. We gladly take this shortcut, given all the other work that goes into Thanksgiving.
Recently I discovered Trader Joe's Pie Crusts and think they outperform Pillsbury. I prefer the flavor and flakiness of Trader Joe's over Pillsbury. I'm not the only one. A recent article in Kitchn reports that Trader Joe's was their favorite crust after taste testing and working with seven different store-bought crusts. A word of caution if you choose Trader Joe's pie crust some people report having trouble with it cracking. The trick is to thaw it in the fridge for 24 - 30 hours. Then bring it to room temperature for an hour or two, out of the box, but still in the plastic wrap. Take care when you open the individual crust packaging. If it starts to crack, repair the crust with your fingers or by using a rolling pin. If disaster strikes and the crust is irreparable, gather the crust back up into a ball and roll it out with a rolling pin.
Fog City DinerThis recipe was inspired by a recipe published in The Fog City Diner cookbook, published in 1992, that also used fresh cream and fresh ginger.
Pumpkin pie with fresh ginger and espresso
Yield 2 pies (12-16 pieces)
Pumpkin pie made with espresso, freshly grated ginger, cream and a splash of bourbon takes this Thanksgiving tradition to new heights and makes for a great breakfast the day after.
For the crust:
- 2 Pillsbury or Trader Joe's refrigerated pie crusts
- Parchment paper
- Aluminum foil
- 2 1/2 cups dried beans or rice
For the filling:
- 2 15-ounce cans of pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix!)
- 2 cups dark brown sugar, packed
- 1 1/2 t kosher salt
- 2 t freshly grated ginger
- 4 t cinnamon
- 1/4 t freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/4 t ground cloves
- 2 t espresso powder
- 6 eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 t vanilla
- 1/4 cup of bourbon
- 3 cups heavy cream
For the crusts:
- Defrost the pie crusts in their box in the fridge for 24 - 30 hours. Remove the crusts from the box, but not the plastic packaging. Allow the crusts to come to room temperature before you open up the packaging. Slowly unroll the crusts. If needed, you can briefly roll the crusts with a rolling pin to fix any cracks that occur. Cracks can also be repaired with your fingers. Or in the worst case, if your pie crust cracks irreparably, gather the dough into a ball and reroll.
- Heat oven to 400 degrees. Unfold each pie crust into a deep dish 9" pie pan. Press crust into pan without stretching. Fold any excess dough under and and crimp the edges. Use a fork to prick a few holes in each crust.
- Cut a 14" circle of parchment paper and lay it over the crust. Fill the pie with dried beans or rice and place in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes and remove from the oven. Remove the rice and parchment paper. Loosely cover the edges of the crust with aluminum foil and return to the oven for another 5 - 6 minutes, just until the crust is no longer raw. Remove the foil and allow the crust to cool while you make the filling.
For the filling:
- Using a mixer, combine pumpkin, brown sugar, salt, spices and espresso powder in a large bowl. Add eggs, vanilla, bourbon and cream and mixed until combined.
- Pour the pumpkin mixture into the pie crusts and bake for 45 to 50 minutes. Pie is done when a knife comes out clean when inserted in the middle of the pie. Remove and cool on a wire rack.
I use deep dish pie pans as I prefer more pumpkin and less crust. If you are using standard pie pans you will likely get three pies out of this recipe.
Cuisine New American