Pumpkin pie is a dessert pie with a spiced, pumpkin-based custard filling. The pumpkin is a symbol of harvest time, and pumpkin pie is often eaten during the fall and early winter. In the United States and Canada, it is usually prepared for Thanksgiving, and other occasions when pumpkin is in season.
The pie filling ranges in color from orange to brown, and is baked in a single pie shell, rarely with a top crust. The pie is generally flavored with cinnamon, powdered ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. Allspice is also commonly used and can replace the clove and nutmeg, as its flavor is similar to both combined. Cardamom and vanilla are also sometimes used as batter spices. The spice mixture is called pumpkin pie spice.
Pumpkin pie, with two slices removed
|Place of origin||United States United Kingdom|
|Main ingredients||Pie shell, pumpkin, eggs, condensed milk, sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, ginger|
Pies made from pumpkins use pie pumpkins which measure about six to eight inches in diameter. They are considerably smaller than jack o'lanterns. The first step for getting the edible part out of the pumpkin is to slice it in half and remove the seeds. The two halves are heated until soft, in an oven, over an open fire, on a stove top, or in a microwave oven. Sometimes the pumpkin halves are brined to soften the pulp instead of being cooked. At this point the pulp is scooped out and puréed.
The pulp is mixed with eggs, evaporated and/or sweetened condensed milk, sugar, and a spice mixture called pumpkin pie spice, which includes nutmeg and other spices (e.g., ginger, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, mace), then baked in a pie shell. Similar pies are made with butternut squash or sweet potato fillings.
The pumpkin is native to the continent of North America. The pumpkin was an early export to France; from there it was introduced to Tudor England, and the flesh of the "pompion" was quickly accepted as pie filler. During the seventeenth century, pumpkin pie recipes could be found in English cookbooks, such as Hannah Woolley's The Gentlewoman's Companion (1675). Pumpkin "pies" made by early American colonists were more likely to be a savory soup made and served in a pumpkin than a sweet custard in a crust.
It was not until the early nineteenth century that the recipes appeared in American cookbooks or pumpkin pie became a common addition to the Thanksgiving dinner. The Pilgrims brought the pumpkin pie back to New England, while the English method of cooking the pumpkin took a different course. In the 19th century, the English pumpkin pie was prepared by stuffing the pumpkin with apples, spices, and sugar and then baking it whole. In the United States after the Civil War, the pumpkin pie was resisted in southern states as a symbol of Yankee culture imposed on the south, where there was no tradition of eating pumpkin pie. Many southern cooks instead made sweet potato pie, or added bourbon and pecans to give a southern touch.
Today, throughout much of the United States, it is traditional to serve pumpkin pie after Thanksgiving dinner. Additionally, many modern companies produce seasonal pumpkin pie-flavored products such as candy, cheesecake, coffee, ice cream, french toast, waffles and pancakes, and many breweries produce a seasonal pumpkin ale or beer; these are generally not flavored with pumpkins, but rather pumpkin pie spices. Commercially made pumpkin pie mix is made from Cucurbita pepo, Cucurbita maxima, and Cucurbita moschata (Libbey Select uses the Select Dickinson Pumpkin variety of C. moschata for its canned pumpkins).
Pumpkin pies were briefly discouraged from Thanksgiving dinners in 1947 as part of a rationing campaign, mainly because of the eggs in the recipe.
Ah! on Thanksday, when from East and from West,
From North and from South comes the pilgrim and guest;
When the gray-haired New Englander sees round his board
The old broken links of affection restored;
When the care-wearied man seeks his mother once more,
And the worn matron smiles where the girl smiled before;
What moistens the lip and what brightens the eye,
What calls back the past, like the rich Pumpkin pie?
Farewell, O fragrant pumpkin pie!
Dyspeptic pork, adieu!
Though to the college halls I hie.
On field of battle though I die, my latest sob, my latest sigh
shall wafted be to you!
And thou, O doughnut rare and rich and fried divinely brown!
Thy form shall fill a noble niche in memory's chamber whilst I pitch
my tent beside the river which rolls on through Kingston town.
And my Love—my little Nell,
the apple of my eye to thee how can I say farewell?
I love thee more than I can tell;
I love thee more than anything—but—pie!
The world's largest pumpkin pie was made in New Bremen, Ohio, at the New Bremen Pumpkinfest. It was created on September 25, 2010. The pie consisted of 1,212 pounds of canned pumpkin, 109 gallons of evaporated milk, 2,796 eggs, 7 pounds of salt, 14.5 pounds of cinnamon, and 525 pounds of sugar. The final pie weighed 3,699 pounds (1,678 kg) and measured 20 feet (6 m) in diameter.
"Apples, Peaches, Pumpkin Pie" is a 1967 song written by Maurice Irby, Jr., produced by Jerry Ross, arranged by Joe Renzetti and performed by Jay & the Techniques on their 1968 album of the same name. It reached #6 on the Billboard chart and #8 on the U.S. R&B chart Outside the United States, "Apples, Peaches, Pumpkin Pie" peaked at #6 on the Canadian R&B chart, and #61 on the Canadian pop chart.Bobby Hebb was originally offered "Apples, Peaches, Pumpkin Pie", but rejected it due to its novelty sound. Ross then offered it to Jay & the Techniques. the song was originally recorded in January of 1967 in Bell Sound Studios in New York with Jerry Ross producing and Joe Renzetti arranging and conducting. Nick Ashford and Valerie Simpson are providing background vocals on this song to accompany the lead singer Jay Proctor while Jerry Ross used session musicians for the song's instrumental backing in place of the band the Techniques. All of the band's singles recorded after this one was released would continue this process.Cuisine of Guinea
Guinean cuisine includes the traditional dishes of fou fou, boiled mango, fried plantains, patates and pumpkin pie.Jay
Jays are several species of medium-sized, usually colorful and noisy, passerine birds in the crow family, Corvidae. The names jay and magpie are somewhat interchangeable, and the evolutionary relationships are rather complex. For example, the Eurasian magpie seems more closely related to the Eurasian jay than to the East Asian blue and green magpies, whereas the blue jay is not closely related to either.Mixed spice
Mixed spice, also called pudding spice, is a British blend of sweet spices, similar to the pumpkin pie spice used in the United States. Cinnamon is the dominant flavour, with nutmeg and allspice. It is often used in baking, or to complement fruits or other sweet foods.
The term "mixed spice" has been used for this blend of spices in cookbooks at least as far back as 1828 and probably much earlier.
Mixed spice is very similar to a Dutch spice mix called koekkruiden or speculaaskruiden, which are used mainly to spice food associated with the Dutch Sinterklaas celebration at December 5. Koekkruiden contain cardamom.Pumpkin
A pumpkin is a cultivar of a squash plant, most commonly of Cucurbita pepo, that is round with smooth, slightly ribbed skin, and most often deep yellow to orange in coloration. The thick shell contains the seeds and pulp. Some exceptionally large cultivars of squash with similar appearance have also been derived from Cucurbita maxima. Specific cultivars of winter squash derived from other species, including C. argyrosperma and C. moschata, are also sometimes called "pumpkin".Native to North America (northeastern Mexico and southern United States), pumpkins are one of the oldest domesticated plants, having been used as early as 7,500 to 5,000 BC. Pumpkins are widely grown for commercial use and are used both for food and recreation. Pumpkin pie, for instance, is a traditional part of Thanksgiving meals in Canada and the United States, and pumpkins are frequently carved as jack-o'-lanterns for decoration around Halloween, although commercially canned pumpkin purée and pumpkin pie fillings are usually made from different kinds of winter squash than the ones used for jack-o'-lanterns.Pumpkin pie spice
Pumpkin pie spice, also known as pumpkin spice, is an American spice mix commonly used as an ingredient in pumpkin pie.
Pumpkin pie spice is similar to the British and Commonwealth mixed spice. It is generally a blend of ground cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, and sometimes allspice. It can also be used as a seasoning in general cooking.
A recipe for this combination includes:
18 parts ground cinnamon
4 parts ground nutmeg
4 parts ground ginger
3 parts ground cloves
3 parts ground allspiceA "Pompkin" recipe calling for a similar spice mix (mace, nutmeg and ginger) can be found as far back as 1796 in the first known published American cookbook, American Cookery, written by Amelia Simmons:
No. 1. One quart stewed and strained, 3 pints cream, 9 beaten eggs, sugar, mace, nutmeg and ginger, laid into paste No. 7 or 3, and with a dough spur, cross and chequer it, and baked in dishes three quarters of an hour.
No. 2. One quart of milk, 1 pint pompkin, 4 eggs, molasses, allspice and ginger in a crust, bake 1 hour.
Pumpkin pie spice has been referenced in cookbooks dating to the 1890s. In recognition of its popularity, it is now available ready-mixed by several companies including McCormick & Company, Trader Joe's and Frontier Natural Products Co-op.
As of 2016, pumpkin spice consumables produce $500 million in annual salesSpice mix
Spice mixes are blended spices or herbs. When a certain combination of herbs or spices is called for in many different recipes (or in one recipe that is used frequently), it is convenient to blend these ingredients beforehand. Blends such as chili powder, curry powder, herbes de Provence, garlic salt, and other seasoned salts are traditionally sold pre-made by grocers, and sometimes baking blends such as pumpkin pie spice are also available. These spice mixes are also easily made by the home cook for later use.Sweet potato pie
Sweet potato pie is a traditional dessert, originating in the Southern United States. It is often served during the American holiday season, especially at Thanksgiving and Christmas in place of pumpkin pie, which is more traditional in other regions of the United States.
It is made in an open pie shell without a top crust. The filling consists of mashed sweet potatoes, evaporated milk, sugar, spices such as nutmeg, and eggs. Other possible ingredients include vanilla or lemon extracts. The baked custard filling may vary from a light and silky to dense, depending on the recipe's ratio of mashed potato, milk and eggs.