Saturday, November 5, 2011

Mini Pumpkin Pies

I'm a believer that everything is better in its miniature form.  That may or may not hold true for everything, but it does for animals and, in this case, food.  And by miniature really means individual and I know that "sharing is caring" but when it comes to pumpkin and dessert, it was it ALL to myself.  Thankyouverymuch.  Plus, it's about time I made something with pumpkin because it is fall after-all.  These pies are de-lic-ous!  They taste just as great as their larger counter part, but are even better (according to my taste-testing boyfriend) because their crust to pie ratio has improved.  More crust, but still all that pumpkin-y goodness!

I tried out this recipe on a rainy Friday night.  There's something about cool, rainy fall weather that really gets me in the mood for baking...probably because I don't start sweating the minute my oven comes on.  I guess that's the price you pay to live in sunny southern California.  Given that the weather has finally cooperated, I was more than in the mood to get my bake on.

This recipe is made from real pumpkin and that's the only way to do it, in my opinion.  I got the recipe from a sticker on my pie pumpkin and only had to alter the baking time and temperature in order to adapt to the smaller pie sizes. 

Miniature Pumpkin Pies
(makes ~12 mini pies)

1 pie pumpkin
1 1/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 egg
1 1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp cloves
1 cup hot water
2 9-inch pie crusts, store bought, refrigerated

  • Cut pumpkin in half, removing stem area. 
  • Scoop out seeds and strings
  • Place pumpkin halves face-down on foil lined baking sheet.  Bake at 350 F for ~1 1/2 hours, until tender.
  • While pumpkin is baking, prepare dough for baking.  Use a 4-inch cookie cutter, a bowl, or cup rim to cut out 12 circles from the two doughs.  Press individual pie circles into prepared, pre-greased muffin pan, letting the edges crimp and fold. 
  • When pumpkin is done, scoop out flesh and stir/mash/food-process until smooth
  • In a bowl, add mashed pumpkin, condensed milk, egg, water, and seasonings and mix together.
  •  Pour filling into each individual pie crust to the top.
  • Bake at 425 F for first 15 minutes, reduce heat to 350 F and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes.
  • Let cool, and let the filling set
  • Top with whipped cream if desired, and dig in!
The hardest part is letting the pies cool when all you want to do is eat away!  But trust me, it's worth the wait! YUM!

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