Saturday, November 6, 2010

Ghouled Chiffon Pies

Serves 6

This recipe also can make two 8-inch pies; be sure to leave the crust in the pie plate before adding the filling.

For the Crust

  • 32 gingersnaps, coarsely broken
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon coarse salt
  • 4 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons unsalted butter melted

For the Filling

  • 1 envelope unflavored gelatin
  • (1 scant tablespoon)
  • ¼ cup cold water
  • 1 ¼ cups canned pumpkin
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • ¼ teaspoon coarse salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

For the Garnish

  • ¼ small sugar pumpkin, peeled
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 ½ cups packed light- brown sugar
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 piece (2 inches long and 1 inch wide peeled fresh ginger, sliced ¼ inches thick

1. Make the crust: Preheat oven to 350. Process gingersnaps, granulated sugar, and salt in a food processor until finely ground. Add butter, and process until combined. Divide mixture among 5 6 inch pie plates, pressing into bottom and up sides. Place on a baking sheet and bake until darkened and firm, 11 to 13 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes. Using an offset spatula. Carefully unmold the crusts, and return to sheet to cool (crusts can be stored in pie plates in airtight containers for up to 2 days.)

2. Make the filling: Sprinkle gelatin over cold water in a bowl. Let stand until softened about 5 minutes.

3. Combine pumpkin, egg yolk, ¼ cup granulated sugar, milk, salt and spices in a saucepan over medium hear, Cook stirring, until mixture begins to thicken about 8 minutes. Do not boil. Remove from heat. Stir in gelatin mixture until dissolved. Let cool completely.

4. Beat egg whites with a mixer until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining ½ cups granulated sugar, beating until stiff peaks form. Whish one-third of beaten egg whites into cooled pumpkin mixture. Gently fold in remaining whites (Filling can be refrigerated, covered, and overnight.) Spoon into pie shells, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour (or up to 2 hours.)

5. Make the garnish: Using a vegetable peeler, shave pumpkin into thin, wide ribbons. Bring water, brown sugar cinnamon sticks and ginger to a boil in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook until reduced by half about 5 minutes. Add pumpkin pieces, Reduce heat. Simmer gently until cool completely (Garnish can stand at room temperature for up to 3 hours.) Top each pie with 3 or 4 pumpkin pieces, discarding syrup serve immediately.

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