We are three sisters united in our search for the divine - in food, libation, literature, art, and nature. This blog will capture the true, sometimes decadent, at times humorous, and every so often transcendent adventures of the Salvation Sisters.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Classic Pumpkin Pie — A Salvation Sisters' Day After Thanksgiving Breakfast Favorite (Gluten-Free)

by Linda

"Cut my pie into four pieces, I don't think I could eat eight." — Yogi Berra

   My brother-in-law, Jay, is fond of saying, "Nothing ruins a good dinner like dessert," and my sister, Michelle, who is married to Jay, has become fond of repeating this sentiment over the many years of their marriage, as well. As I have gotten older, I have grudgingly leaned more and more toward this perspective, although I do enjoy a scoop of ice cream, a piece of chocolate or a little something sweet after dinner from time to time.
   When it comes to Thanksgiving, our family has come to agree that when it comes to the biggest meal of the year, having a big slice of pie not too long after eating a very large dinner, is the final coup in feeling overly full and uncomfortable—an unpleasant exercise in gluttony.

   Not ones to cast aside dessert completely, especially at Thanksgiving, our family has stumbled upon a solution to this issue that seems to please everyone. I am pretty sure that we are not alone in adopting this tradition, but I have yet to see a food magazine touting having the requisite pumpkin pie for breakfast the morning after—which is what we now do.

   On the morning after the big day there is no 'Black Friday' for this family. We have traveled long distances to be together and enjoy each other's company. First one up makes coffee, and then as we wake up and gather in the family room, each of us grabs coffee and pie at our leisure. With a fresh palate, I enjoy my slice so much more the day after.

Vignettes from Michelle's beautiful holiday tableau.
My nephew Paul and his son Parker are top right.
My son Jordan and our mother Dianne are bottom left.
Our family enjoys a lazy morning after the big meal.
My nieces Avalon and Sonora take time to pose for a photo with their cousin Jordan.

Salvation Sisters' Classic Pumpkin Pie (Gluten-Free)

by Michelle

   This pumpkin pie is a combination of our Grandma Elsie's batter and Libby's recipe that is printed on every can of pumpkin purée. To make pumpkin purée from scratch you would peel, cube, cook and mash small pumpkins that are labeled "sweet". This one of the few occasions where we honestly like using canned pumpkin better than fresh based on taste, texture and ease of use. You may choose to substitute one rounded tablespoon pumpkin pie spice for the cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg, however the taste will be slightly different. Do not freeze a pumpkin pie, as this will cause the crust to separate from the filling.
   I like to garnish the pies with piped Cream Cheese Frosting flavored with Amaretto liqueur and cinnamon-sugar dusted Pie Crust Cookies made from the leftover dough. 
   As part of a dessert buffet, the pies are gorgeous displayed with Apple Crostatas or All American Apple Pies and Pecan Tassies. Homemade Marshmallows or Meringue Cookies are a fun addition as well as Brownies for the die-hard chocolate crowd. 

The photos above are of the Absolutely Delicious All-Butter Pie Crust
that is gluten-free and gum-free. Your guests will never know the difference.

All-Butter Pie Crust 
Absolutely Delicious All-Butter Pie Crust (Gluten Free and Gum Free)

The remaining scraps of pie dough are great for making pie decorations.
Michelle purchased the cookie cutters from Williams-Sonoma.
Jordan gives his mom the 'stink-eye' for bringing out the camera too early in the morning.
Pumpkin Pies—just out of the oven and piping hot.
Ingredients for Pumpkin Pie:
2 unbaked deep-dish pie shells of your choice from above:
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar, or 3/4 cup granulated and 3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsps ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves 
1/4 tsp nutmeg
6 large eggs
29 ounces (about 3-1/2 cups) 100% pure pumpkin purée
2 tsps pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
24 fl. oz. half-and-half or evaporated milk, or a combination of the two

1. Arrange two oven racks so one sits in the middle or lower third of the oven and the other on the top shelf or upper third. Place a large cookie sheet on the top rack. The cookie sheet will act as a shield for the pies as they bake to prevent the crust and surface of pie from over-browning. Preheat oven to 375°F.
2. Mix sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg in a small bowl. Beat eggs in a large bowl. Stir in pumpkin, vanilla extract and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk or half-and-half. Pour evenly into both pie shells.
3. Place pies side by side in the oven. Bake for 60-65 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Rotate pies after 30 minutes for even baking. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours. If you wish, decorate rim of pies with piped cream cheese frosting and pie crust cookies. Serve with whipped cream. Yield: 2 pies

Pumpkin Pie: It's what's for breakfast on the day after Thanksgiving at our house.

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