Turkey day. It comes once a year. For some, the day is slightly busier with a big dinner at the end of the day. For others, like us, it is more chaotic with more food. Our Thanksgiving started the day before. I have never cooked Thanksgiving dinner. I might have helped my mom when I used to live at my parents house, but most of the time I just enjoyed the food. This year, I thought I would contribute some pies. I don’t know why I do this to myself when it comes to giving to others. I tend to overestimate how much time I have to devote to such endeavors.
I had to make 2 pumpkin pies and 1 pecan pie. The pumpkin pie was easy. The recipe was taken from Live Well Bake Often. I just had to defrost the pie crust and blind bake it. I bought a frozen crust. For those who don’t bake pies often, like me, blind baking is when you bake a pie crust without the filling. This ensures that the crust is sturdy enough for the wet filling. This is typically done for custard pies like pumpkin. This gives time for the filling to bake and the crust doesn’t get soggy at the bottom. I did not have any pie weights so I used rice as suggested by a baking article online.
The pecan pie, on the other hand, was a different story. It wasn’t difficult, it just threw off because I thought that the method was about the same as the pumpkin pie. For this pie, I didn’t need to partially bake the crust. All I had to do was mix the ingredients, place the pecans at the bottom of the crust, pour the mixture onto the pecans and bake. It took way longer to bake this pie. It took about 80 minutes. The minimum baking time was about 50 minutes. I got the recipe from Food Network’s Ree Drummond and she mentions that it could take 75 minutes. My husband and I didn’t know it would take this long to bake it. After 50 minutes, the pie was still very wet and jiggled a lot. I was afraid that it was going to burn. Luckily it turned out fine and both pies were a hit with our families.
I will definitely save both of these recipes and will make them again next year. I just want to make a note that these recipes called for a deep dish pie crust. We bought the shallow one and had some filling left over for all of my pies. My husband said that he loved how I made the pecan pie because it was a good balance between the pecans and the sweetness of the filling. So if you want your pecan pie to be less sweet, a shallow pie crust will work. For the pumpkin pie, I might try to make the deep dish version so I won’t waste all that precious pie goodness!
Now it’s off to my next baking/cooking adventure. Stuffed peppers here I come!