Written by Shaina of Food for my Family.
Sheets covered the couches to protect them from the greasy little hands that would scoot away from the table and be wiping their hands on them faster than you could spread butter on your roll. The kitchen was always bustling, but it was full with only one body, that of my grandmother.
She would hurriedly but with great precision move pots and pans from stove top and oven to serving dishes, all lined up with serving utensils and ready to be whisked away as if by angels out to the dinner table.
Still, if you stood silently and perhaps offered to take a dish to the table for her, you could observe the magic from the corner of the room. If you happened to do so, you’d notice first that the encore to the meal was nowhere to be found.
A plate with carved turkey, homemade gravy in a decorative boat, the dressing in its bowl, a gelatin mold, cranberry sauce, vegetables and baskets upon baskets of rolls to be slathered in bright yellow butter, but the room was void of any sweet eats.
Photos by Shaina Olmanson
It wasn’t until the food had been placed on the table, the grace and thanks given that my grandmother would steal back through the house to her bedroom, where she had carefully stashed the pies, hidden from sight until the end, almost as if unveiling a work of art for the first time.
For many, the pie plays just as an important role in a traditional Thanksgiving dinner as the turkey. Make yours extra special this Thanksgiving. Create it yourself, unveiling it at just the perfect moment, when the dinner guests are full and happy and have forgotten all about the dessert that should follow the meal.
A hidden layer of chocolate in an unassuming pumpkin pie, a ring of roasted pecans and keeping it a secret until the very end just might do the trick.
|Black-Bottom Maple Pumpkin Pie||
- Pie dough for one 9″ pie crust
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 2 cups pumpkin purée, homemade and strained
- 3/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 egg yolk
- 4 ounces softened cream cheese
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon allspice
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 8-10 whole pecans
- Preheat oven to 350º F. Roll out the pie dough and press into the bottom of a 9″ pie plate. Chill until dough is stiff. Using pie weights or dry beans to hold the pie crust down and bake for 10 minutes. Take the pie weight off and bake for an additional 10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring cream just to a boil. Remove from heat and whisk in the chocolate until completely melted. Spread the chocolate into the pre-baked pie crust. Let stand in a cool place to allow chocolate to partially set.
- Mix together the purée, syrup and salt together in a food processor or mixer. Beat in the cream cheese. Add in eggs and egg yolk and beat until incorporated. Stir in vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, allspice and nutmeg. Pour the pumpkin mix slowly over the chocolate and bake at 350º F for 60-70 minutes until a knife inserted 1″ from the edge of the crust comes out clean.
- Place pecans along the outside edge of the pie for the last 10 minutes of baking. When the pie is done, remove from oven and allow to cool completely. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
I’m linking up to TidyMom‘s Love the Pie event!
What is your favorite part of Thanksgiving dinner? Do you wait the whole meal through for the pie, or is there a dish somewhere in the middle that has your heart?