Next Thursday is Thanksgiving. For the first time in many years, I will be spending Thanksgiving with a group of people I don’t know very well. Not that there is anything wrong with that. I’m sure everyone will be lovely, and that we will get along famously (I hope!).
Yet, I’m nervous. I’m bringing dessert. I don’t know what the family traditions are. What they love and what they hate. Also, the baker in me wants to impress. I want to bring something that is showstopping, but also delicious.
After weeks of reading Thanksgiving themed magazines, newspaper articles, blog posts, and revisiting my favorite Thanksgiving recipes, I came across a recipe for Pumpkin Meringue Pie from Leite’s Culinaria. It looked gorgeous and it only required a few ingredients. I proceeded to do what any normal person would do: test drive the recipe before Thanksgiving. Yes, this may sound a little crazy, but what would I do if the pie turned out to be a total disaster the day of?
I’m writing this post because this pie was a culinary revelation for me. I think it is the perfect thanksgiving dessert. Everyone loves pumpkin. The crust recipe skips over all the annoying traditional crust steps: chilling, rolling, chilling, placing on the pie plate, and then chilling again. You just combine the ingredients and press them into the pan. It’s a no-roll, no-chill, no-wait crust. Finally, the meringue is like built-in whipped cream: light, fluffy, and moist. Oh, and did I mention it is show-stoppingly gorgeous and delicious?
For the recipe, please visit Leite’s Culinaria.
A few tips:
• The instructions in the pie recipe are for a regular crust. Instead do as David suggests, and make the brown sugar version of the Shortcut Pie Crust on his site. I’m a little OCD about an even pie crust so although you are supposed to press this dough on the pie pan, I roll it out between two pieces of parchment paper and carefully place it on the pie pan. Then I just press it in, and create a decorative border.
• You have to wait for the filling to cool before topping the pie with the meringue. I just placed the pie on the windowsill with the window open. It was cold enough to cool the pie in about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Just make sure the bottom of the pie pan is cool.
• I used a torch instead of putting the pie back in the oven.
• You will notice my meringue is not as tall as the one in the David’s post. I used a slightly larger pie plate.
Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks, and I have a lot to give thanks for. I hope you spend turkey day surrounded by all your friends, family, and loved ones. Happy Thanksgiving!