Pumpkin Pudding Pie in a Spekulatius Crust

The Kiwi is a pie person. Seriously, the man loves pie. But sadly, since the person doing the baking {i.e. me} is more of a cake lover, he doesn’t get them very often. The only two occasions he can count on having pie is his birthday and Thanksgiving.

Case in point, last Thanksgiving, despite having the flu,  I went all out making bacon wrapped turkey, some disastrous stuffing, the very best cranberry sauce, mashed sweet potatoes, and, the crowning glory, a pumpkin pie… from scratch.

I’d love nothing more than to have a repeat of last year {with better dressing}, but it’s just not in the cards this year. Most of my precious kitchen tools have either been shipped or sold, and all we have left are the things that came with the apartment which includes, um, basically nothing useful. Plus, we deep cleaned for an inspection that was supposed to happen Monday but is now happening Saturday, so we have to keep the house spotless. No big Thanksgiving feast will be happening in that kitchen this year.

Now, I could wax poetic about gratitude and how it should be present in our lives everyday, not just Thanksgiving. It’s just a day after all. {A day followed, I might mention, by it’s antithesis, Black Friday, which in my opinion is one of the most atrocious American holiday traditions. Ever.}

But really, I do love this day of celebration: for thanks, for generosity, for family.

Don’t worry, we aren’t letting the day pass us by completely without a tiny bit of cheer. Besides, tomorrow also marks 2 years of living in Munich! Let’s face it, the Kiwi isn’t going to let me get away with not making pie

As a compromise between a messy and complicated, full-fledged, from scratch pie and the ‘I can’t be bothered,’ nonexistent pie, I whipped up this. Basically, I just stuck pumpkin pudding in a pie crust.

Will it fall apart when serving? Signs point to yes.

Will it be mind-blowingly delicious? Absolutely.

Whip it up tonight, stick it in the fridge, and forget about it. Dessert is done. Pull it out at lunch tomorrow and prepare for folk’s mouthful mumblings of “Oh my gah, it’s so good.” At least, that’s what I got from the Kiwi.

Pumpkin Pudding Pie in a Spekulatius Crust

{makes 1 pie}

Spekulatius Crust
20 spekulatius cookies, about 180 grams {ginger snaps, or ginger nuts for the Kiwis, will probably work perfectly, but if you can get spekulatius, do it.}
6 tbsp butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C.

Give the cookies a whiz in the food processor until they are just crumbs. In a small mixing bowl melt the butter then add the crumbs. Mix the crumbs and butter until the butter is completely incorporated.

Press into a pie pan and bake for 10 minutes. Let it cool completely before filling it with the pudding.

Pumpkin Pudding
1 cup milk
1/3 cup maple syrup
1 egg yolk
1 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup pumpkin puree {canned will do also, just make sure it’s pumpkin puree not pie filling}
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp butter, room temperature
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ginger

In a medium pot on medium heat, bring the milk and maple syrup to a simmer.

In a bowl, cream together your egg yolk, sugar, and cornstarch. While stirring your egg yolks, add a spoonful of the warm milk. This will keep your eggs from curdling when you add the egg yolk mixture to the pot of milk. Go ahead and do that—add the creamy egg yolk mix to the milk and maple syrup. Then add the vanilla and give it a stir. Let it cook for about 5 minutes so it will thicken up.

While it’s cooking grab a mixing bowl and whisk together your pumpkin, brown sugar, butter, and spices.

Once the milk/egg yolk/maple syrup mix has thickened enough to coat your spoon, slowly start adding the pumpkin mixture stirring as you go. Once it’s all combined pour it into your pie crust and let it rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes. Then pop it in the fridge until you are ready to serve!

Serve with whipped cream, or, in my case, whipped coconut cream. Yum!

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Whole Wheat Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

You made it to Friday, my friend! Go you!

Remember a couple months ago when I did Nicole’s Monogram Swap? Well, in addition to getting some super cute gear for my kitchen, I also met and cultivated relationships with a group of lovely and talented ladies. One of those ladies is Susan over at the lifestyle blog, Charming Lucy. As a self-professed non-cook {Susan} and a fashion struggler {that’d be me}, we’ve been great resources for each other.

Today I’m blogging over there sharing the recipe for my Whole Wheat Pumpkin Spice Pancakes made with our fresh pumpkin puree and sprinkled with those Spiced Pumpkin Seeds. Head on over for the recipe!

If you’ve ventured over here from Charming Lucy, welcome! I’m so glad you could stop by! I sure hope you’ll stick around for a bit, drop me a line and say hi. I’d love to get to know you! And, of course, let me know if you try the pancakes!

Here are some of the things I used to make these magical pancakes a smidge more delicious:

Our How-To for making your own pumpkin puree.

The recipe for our simple granola staple.

The easy, peasy topping: spiced pumpkin seeds.

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Spice Pancakes from Kiwi and Peach

Spiced Pumpkin Seeds

This week is flying by y’all! Tonight we are headed to see one of the Kiwi’s favorite bands, the Mountain Goats, and then just one more work day. The Kiwi is taking Friday off, so hopefully we have at least one day without crazy long lines.

Also on Friday, I will be over on the lifestyle blog, Charming Lucy, sharing the recipe for our favorite fall breakfast, Whole Wheat Pumpkin Spice Pancakes. Yum!

Today, I thought I’d pop in really quickly to share an easy peasy topping for all of those pumpkin spice goodies you’re baking this month, including those pancakes I know you’re going to be whipping up this weekend.

{P.S. Have y’all made that pumpkin puree yet?!  I want to hear about it!}

Spiced Pumpkin Seeds on Whole Wheat Pumpkin Spice Pancakes from Kiwi and Peach

Spiced Pumpkin Seeds

1/4 cup shelled pumpkin seeds
1 tsp honey
big pinch of sea salt
little pinch of cayenne pepper
2 tsp butter

Start heating your pan on medium heat. While thats getting hot, mix your pumpkin seeds, honey, salt, and pepper together in a small bowl. Make sure it is mixed well or you might get a surprise clump of cayenne pepper. Ouch!

Once the pan is hot, melt the butter and then toss in the seed mixture.  Stirring continuously, cook for about 5 minutes or until they are nice and toasted and most have popped. {Oh and watch out, they pop!}

DIY Pumpkin Puree

In terms of motivating me to not rely on processed goods, there are definitely benefits to not being able to find the processed things I’ve relied on in the past here in Germany.

Last fall, motivated by a need want for all things pumpkiny and no canned pumpkin puree to be found, I was left with no choice but to figure out how to make it on my own.

Now, I won’t go as far as to say that the canned stuff isn’t good for you because it’s fine. Most of the time it is 100% pumpkin with no additives or preservatives save salt {but even then only in a few cases}. But the taste folks. Oh, the taste. If you’ve ever had a pumpkin pie with the real stuff… I’ll just say that there is a difference. A delicious, delicious difference.

The How-To Series {DIY Pumpkin Puree} | kiwi+peach

Step One
Lob the top off the pumpkin and then cut it in half. {I enlisted the help of the Kiwi. Dull knives make this hard work.}

The How-To Series {DIY Pumpkin Puree} | kiwi+peach

Step Two
Scoop out the seeds and guts. {Once you get the pumpkin in the oven you can go back and pick out all of the seeds for making pepitas!}

The How-To Series {DIY Pumpkin Puree} | kiwi+peach

Step Three
Cut it into quarters and place on a baking sheet. Pop it in the oven on 350°F/175°C for an hour.

The How-To Series {DIY Pumpkin Puree} | kiwi+peach

The How-To Series {DIY Pumpkin Puree} | kiwi+peach

Step Four
After an hour, take the pumpkin out of the oven and let it cool for a bit until you can touch it comfortably.

The How-To Series {DIY Pumpkin Puree} | kiwi+peach

Step Five
Scoop out the flesh of the pumpkin and put it in a food processor. Add a 1/2 cup of water and pulse, scrapping the sides occasionally, until its pureed to a consistency you’re happy with.

The How-To Series {DIY Pumpkin Puree} | kiwi+peach

The How-To Series {DIY Pumpkin Puree} | kiwi+peach

Step Six
You can use it immediately, or you can spoon it into a baggie or tupperware container and freeze it. I do about a cup of puree per bag so that I can defrost just one at a time. It will keep in the freezer for about 9 months I hear, but I’ve never tested it. The stuff is gone pretty quickly around here. The Kiwi loves him some pie.

The How-To Series {DIY Pumpkin Puree} | kiwi+peach

There you have it folks–fresh pumpkin puree you can use to get your beta carotene fix in things like hummus, ravioli filling, pancakes, etc. Really, the possibilities are endless, so get to roasting and pureeing while the pumpkin gettin’ is good!

Roasted Pumpkin Hummus

I get a stupid amount of the warm and fuzzies when I get to cook for people. There is something about the thought process that goes into creating a meal for someone that is the ultimate display of friendship and caring to me. As we’ve explored the world, I’ve discovered that this communion, which I had always considered inherently Southern, is actually the most universal kind of thing. {duh!}

This weekend one of our close friends here in Munich celebrated the big 3-0. Since food is obviously my love language, I volunteered to do some cooking for her little get together. Since another friend was whipping up dessert, I was got to work on the savories. Wanting to keep it simple and fresh, I made two whole wheat pizza bases and topped one with pesto and roasted heirloom tomatoes and the other with caramelized onions, figs, and gorgonzola cheese. {recipes for both coming soon!}

I also really wanted to whip up something for us to munch on before dinner. I was leaning toward making hummus, and when I spotted pumpkins at the market, it was sold. I love fall!

I’ll go more in depth on how to make your own pumpkin puree next week, but suffice it to say that it is incredibly easy and is so much more flavorful than the canned stuff. {Plus we got pepitas!}

What about you? How do you show people they are loved? What gives you the warm fuzzies?

Roasted Pumpkin Hummus | kiwi+peach

Roasted Pumpkin Hummus with Veggies

The Hummus
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 cup chick peas
1 clove of roasted garlic {non-roasted will work too, it’s just spicier}
1/3 cup olive oil
juice from 1/2 of a lemon {1-2 tbsp}
1 tbsp cumin
salt and pepper to taste

The Presentation
pumpkin seeds
bell peppers of various colors
cucumber

Combine all of the hummus ingredients in your food processor and process the heck out of it. {By that I mean let it go for a couple of minutes until you’re happy with the consistency.}

Prep your veggies for dipping. When you dish it up for serving, sprinkle a few salted pumpkin seeds on top and enjoy!