Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Best Ever????


That was my reaction when my neighbor told me I made the best pumpkin pie he had ever had. (And mind you, he isn't exactly what you would call a spring chicken.) So if Mitch says it is the best, I guess I will take his word for it. And I will share the recipe with all of you so that you too can be lavished with compliments at your families Christmas. (You can find the original here.)

I also must put a little disclaimer out there. One of the reasons I chose this recipe was the crust. I am not very good at making eye-appealing pie crusts, so I like pies that call for graham cracker crusts. I also didn't follow the recipe and I used a pre-made crust.

My second confession is that I did not cook the pie in a hot water bath. I just cooked it at 325 until it seemed done. Pretty helpful information, right?

Vanilla-Bourbon Pumpkin Tart

3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs (about 5 cookie sheets)
1 tablespoon finely chopped pecans
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon butter, melted
Cooking spray

1 cup (8 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 (15-ounce) can unsweetened pumpkin
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons bourbon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice

Remaining ingredients:
1/3 cup cold heavy cream
2 teaspoons powdered sugar


1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. To prepare crust, combine first 3 ingredients in a bowl. Drizzle butter over crumb mixture; stir with a fork. Firmly press into bottom and 1 inch up sides of a 9-inch springform pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 8 minutes or until lightly browned; cool on a wire rack.
3. To prepare filling, beat cream cheese, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, and brown sugar in a large bowl with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Add pumpkin and eggs; beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl as needed. Add bourbon and the next 5 ingredients (through ground allspice); beat 1 minute or until combined. Pour cheese mixture into prepared pan. Place pan in a large roasting pan; add hot water to pan to a depth of 1 inch. Bake at 350° for 35 minutes or until center barely moves when side of pan is tapped. Cool completely on wire rack. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight. Place cream and powdered sugar in a small bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed until stiff peaks form. Serve sweetened whipped cream with tart.