Last year for Thanksgiving we made our first "from scratch" pumpkin pie. It was a fun experience. We purchased a special "pie" pumpkin. With no clue how to proceed, we just quartered the pumpkin, cleaned out the seeds and other "pumpkin guts" (to quote Connor) placed cut side down on a cookie sheet, and baked until soft. Once cooked, I scraped the meat into the food processor bowl and pureed until smooth. Not happy with the not-orange-enough color of the puree, I added a cooked carrot to the mixture. It didn't change the flavor, but made the color more appetizing. I actually ended up with more than I needed, so I froze the remained to use in future pies or pumpkin bread.
My plan was to use the puree in place of canned pumpkin in my favorite pie recipe, but thought it deserved a homemade crust. Since I rely on frozen pie crust, I called on my son James, the chef, to make the pastry. He made a rustic, French style crust, rich with butter and sugar. It was delicious. We will definitely be doing this again.
This is my old "go to" recipe. Adjust accordingly if you bake your own pumpkin.
Pumpkin Cheesecake Pie
Heat oven to 425°
2 Crusts for 9" deep dish pie
16 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 ½ cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
1 can pumpkin (29oz.)
Whipped cream for garnish
Beat cream cheese and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time.
Stir in cinnamon, nutmeg and pumpkin until smooth. Pour mixture into prepared crust. Place on cookie sheet in preheated, hot oven.
Immediately lower temperature to 350°.
Bake 35 - 45 minutes or until center is almost set
Cool completely on wire rack. Serve topped with whipped cream