pumpkin pie



My family has been after me to bake a pumpkin pie and while I have made several quiche recipes before, I’ve never actually made a pie. A friend once gave me pie weights, which I jokingly mistook for jewelry;  such is my experience in the realm of all things requiring crust. But my husband’s pleading puppy face and the sudden recollection of canned pumpkin imbued me with courage and vowed to CREATE for the universe a pumpkin pie.

The first thing I did was skip making the crust from scratch. Like I have time for that! Then I did what any desperate mother with all the baking skills of a five year-old would do: I searched “pumpkin pie from a can” recipes on my iPad and viola! All I needed was evaporated milk, pumpkin spice, and pumpkin can.

Did you know that the pumpkin can comes with a recipe of its own? How cool is THAT? Did you know that there is a special way to REMOVE the label from the can so as not to rip the recipe in half? I didn’t either.

But it’s just food and heck I wasn’t going to be eating it, so I just combined the instructions from the ripped label with what I could recall from the Internet, and whipped up a batch what can only be described as pumpkin smoothie. Into the crust it went!
Now, you may wonder why I filled it so high, and I’m not offended by that question. It’s an honest one and easy to answer. It’s because I follow directions, and if the recipe says to pour the batter into the pie tin, then I’m going to do just that. You can blame me, my Catholic upbringing, or the hours I spent reading Amelia Bedelia, but there it is.

I really can’t recall much of what I was thinking as I put the pie into the preheated oven, but I might have thought that the evaporated milk would actually help evaporate some of the spilled pumpkin frappe? It seemed so plausible at the time …

HUSBAND: “Something’s burning.”

ME: “Oh, it’s just the pie.” I said this nonchalantly, to imply that this development is merely an evolution of the recipe.

HUSBAND, helping as only a man can: “Why would you want to burn the pie?”

ME, MY INNER VOICE: Because burning the pie is a #@$%ing metaphor for ALL the things I would LOVE to #@*&ing burn up in my life right now so don’t even get me started.

ME: no verbal response.  I was still trying to figure out how long the thing needed to bake at 425F and WHEN to turn it down to WHAT temperature.

The next time I peeked into the oven door, the crusts were already burned. I recalled a vision of special crust covers I saw once while killing time with my mom at Sur La Table but who could have predicted the necessity of such frivolity?

So, oxymorons aside, I took it from the oven. It was orange and black, perfect for Halloween.

The dog loved it. He can’t wait for Thanksgiving.   

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