Every Thanksgiving for the past several years, my husband and I have attempted to make pumpkin pie from scratch. I mean, like FROM SCRATCH... like grow the pumpkins in our garden, roast the pumpkins, harvest the fruit, make our puree, and then bake a pie (with homemade pie crust, of course).
And EVERY YEAR we have failed... I don't know what happens. The thing explodes. It cracks on top. Or it's too watery. I don't know. I don't get it. We can make pecan pie, apple pie, and shoot, even lemon meringue pie *from scratch* without difficulty. So I don't know why the pumpkin pie is so elusive.
So I thought, wait a minute. I can bake tarts. Why not... make a pumpkin tart.
So we set off on a mission to make our own pumpkin tart from scratch. I used the standard French tart dough recipe below that is very easy to make and found a promising looking recipe on Martha Stewart (of course).
And guess what?! We nailed it on the first attempt! WHAAAT? Take that, pumpkin pie! And honestly, this tastes exactly like a pumpkin pie.
So what's the difference between the pumpkin pie and pumpkin tart? They taste the same. But the pumpkin tart has more crust than the pumpkin pie. Granted, tart crust is tastier than the pie crust. I suppose I could have made the crust thinner if I wanted.
Would I make this again? YES! Plus, it's cuter than a pumpkin pie.
Tart dough (recipe from David Leibovitz, I recommend reading his recipe on his site - it's funny)
90 g (3 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
3 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
156 g (5oz, or 1 slightly-rounded cup) flour
- Preheat the oven to 410º F
- In a medium-sized ovenproof bowl, combine the butter, oil, water, sugar, and salt.
- Place the bowl in the oven for 15 minutes, until the butter is bubbling and starts to brown just around the edges.
- When done, remove the bowl from oven (and be careful, since the bowl will be hot and the mixture might sputter a bit), dump in the flour and stir it in quickly, until it comes together and forms a ball which pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
- Transfer the dough to a 9-inch (23 cm) tart mold with a removable bottom and spread it a bit with a spatula OR transfer the dough to your mini tart pans. It doesn't matter the size of your tart pans. Save a raspberry size piece of dough and set it aside.
- Once the dough is cool enough to handle, pat it into the shell with the heel of your and, and use your fingers to press it up the sides of the tart mold.
- Prick the dough all over with the tines of a fork about ten times, then bake the tart shell in the oven at 410F for 15 minutes, or until the dough is golden brown.
- Remove from the oven and if there are any sizable cracks, use the bit of reserved dough to fill in and patch them.
- I find it best to pinch off a small amount of the reserved dough, roll it gently between your fingers to soften it, then wedge it into the cracks, smoothing it gently with your pinky.
- Let the shell cool before filling.
15 ounces (1 can) pumpkin puree
1 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1tsp coarse salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp allspice
2 large lightly beaten eggs
- Preheat oven to 325F. Whisk together all of the ingredients.
- Pour into your prepared pie tart crust.
- Place dish on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake, rotating halfway through, until filling is set and slightly puffed but still a little wobbly, approx 55-60 minutes.
- Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely. Refrigerate uncovered for at least 6 hours. Serve chilled, with whipped cream or ice cream! It will keep for 2 days.
I use my AWESOME instant whipped cream maker to make the whipped cream. I *love* that thing.
I decorated it with some pumpkin seeds too. You can impress your friends with this pumpkin tart, and frankly, I thought it was easier to make than the pumpkin pie (no explosions this year!).
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