I didn’t have a recipe for a gluten-free pumpkin pie last Thanksgiving. Missing that holiday classic inspired me to delve deeper into gluten-free baking, which lead to my soon-to-be-released cookbook, Gluten-Free Baking. One of the stars of the book is a luxurious pumpkin pie, and the variation here will be one of the stars of our holiday meal.
My goal for the book was to create goodies that are so tasty, with such pleasing texture, no one will think they are gluten-free. I didn’t want to fill the recipes with the traditional gluten-free, flavorless and nutritionally empty white starches that are the backbone of most gluten-free baking. I wanted to feature whole grains and naturally gluten-free formulas, with just enough white starch to hold the goodies together. My friends and editors say I succeeded.
Gluten Free & More magazine got wind of my book, and asked me to invent baked treats for their readers. I created the pumpkin pie here for their Gluten Free Holidays guide. The crust is crunchy and scented with of one of my signature baking flavors- ginger. The filling is rich, and boasts great taste from spices, brown sugar and pure Vermont maple syrup. The pie is easy to put together, and because it can be made a day ahead, its on my holiday countdown to prepare on Wednesday. The tempting aromas of the baking pie will have everyone in the house anticipating Thanksgiving.
Brown Sugar and Spice Pumpkin Pie with Gingersnap Crust
- 10 ounces gluten-free gingersnaps, about 46 1½-inch cookies
- 5 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled slightly
- 1 15- ounce can pumpkin
- ¾ cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup or molasses
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon coarse kosher salt
- 3 large eggs
- 1¼ cups whipping cream
- 1½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- For the crust: Place the gingersnaps in a food processor. Pulse until finely ground. With the machine running, add the butter and process until evenly moist. Press the crust over the bottom and up the sides of a 10-inch deep-dish glass pie plate. Refrigerate until firm, at least 20 minutes.
- For the filling: Combine the pumpkin, brown sugar, maple syrup, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a large bowl. Whisk until smooth. Add the eggs and whisk until smooth. Whisk in the cream and vanilla. Pour the filling into the crust.
- Bake the pie until the filling is puffed on the edges and center is set, gently covering the edges with foil if the crust browns too quickly, about 1 hour. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Serve at room temperature or chilled.
Photo by Brian Ambrose