February 21, 2011

Apple Butter Pumpkin Pie

30 Nov 2010, Robin ‘Morning-after Pumpkin Pie’.

1 9” unbaked pie crust

1 c mashed cooked or tinned pumpkin (DON’T use so-called ‘pumpkin pie filling’)

1 c apple butter: herewith begins the lecture. It all depends on your apple butter. You want something as thick as possible, and preferably not too sweet, but use what you like

¼ to ½ c dark brown sugar, depending on your apple butter

Again, the amount of spices you use will depend on the spiciness of your apple butter. So, approximately ½ tsp cinnamon, ¼ tsp allspice, ¼ tsp ginger. I like sweet spices and would expect to use 1 tsp cinnamon, but if I’m using apple butter that I also made, this may be overkill

3 eggs

½ c evaporated milk

Probably a tablespoon or two of ordinary milk

Combine pumpkin, apple butter, brown sugar, spices. (Mush up the brown sugar in a little of the pumpkin first, so it’ll beat in smoothly.) Beat eggs together vigorously, then lightly into the pumpkin. Stir in about half the evaporated milk and look at what you’ve got. It should look gloppy but not runny. (It helps if you’re used to what ordinary pumpkin pie filling looks like raw. This will be darker and have more texture because of the apple butter, but it should be about the same consistency.) If it’s already runny, stop now. If it still looks kind of La Brea Tar Pitsy, stir in the rest of the evaporated milk. Now look at it again. If it’ll actually keep its shape in a spoon, that’s too gloppy: add a little milk. If it slowly oozes over the edge of the spoon—perfect.

Pour in the unbaked pie shell. I cover the edges with tin foil so they don’t burn. 400°F for about 10 minutes, then lower to 350° and start checking after about 20 more minutes. You want it set but not shrivelled, and you want to take the tin foil off the edges of the crust about 15 minutes before you take the pie out. I usually figure 45-50 minutes total.

As I recall it took me four days to get through it. It was gone by the weekend—I did have a friend round once for a cup of tea and a slice of pie. That was back in the days when I had a metabolism however . . . and also I lived alone, so if I wanted to have a glass of cranberry juice and a quarter of a pie for supper, it was my business.

Raspberry cheesecake

Sunshine Contest – Round 2, 9 Aug 10

Adapted from a recipe I found on Epicurious:

For crust:
8 1/2 oz gingersnaps, finely ground in a food processor (makes approx 2 1/3 cups)
1 1/4 sticks (10 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled

For filling:
20 oz cream cheese (2 1/2 eight-ounce packages), softened
8 oz mascarpone cheese at room temperature (about 1 cup)
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons Chambord (or your favorite raspberry liquor)
1/4 teaspoon salt

For topping:
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon salt

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Butter bottom and side of a 9-inch springform pan. Laying a parchment round in the bottom of the pan helps if you want to serve it on anything other than the springform bottom.

For the crust- Mix gingersnap crumbs and melted butter until all the crumbs are damp and pat into the bottom of the pan and slightly up the sides (1″-1.5″ thick). Bake in the oven for about 10 minutes, then let cool completely. Leave the oven on.

Filling- Beat cream cheese, mascarpone, and sugar with an electric mixer at medium high speed until fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Add eggs 1 at a time, beat well after each addition. Add vanilla, lemon juice, Chambord, and salt and mix at low speed until everything is incorporated. Pour into cooled crust and bake until cake is set and puffed around edge but still trembles slightly when pan is shaken gently, 30-40 minutes. Pull it out of the oven while you mix the topping, but leave the oven on.

Top- Mix together topping ingredients (can add more liquor if you want), and spoon over the slightly cooled cake, leave ~1/4″ around the edges for the topping to spread. Bake for a final 10 minutes.

Run a knife around the outside edge of the cake to loosen it from the sides and help prevent cracking. Cool completely on the rack and then chill for 6-8 hours (yes, it really needs it!). Serve with lots of fresh raspberries. It’s worth the wait!

Randolpha’s Famous Peach Pie

jkribbitdesigns in ‘Sunshine Contest – Round 2’, 9 aug 10

1 cup flour
1/8 cup milk
1/4 cup oil
pinch of salt

Mix ingredients. Roll out (using wax paper), put in dish, poke holes with a fork, bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool

Cream Cheese Filling:
8 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup whipping cream

Mix ingredients. Poor into pie shell. Chill.

Fresh Peach Layer:
Slice fresh peaches onto cream cheese filling. (3-4 good sized peaches should be plenty for both peach layers.)

Cooked Peach Topping:
2 cups fresh peaches (sliced or chunked)
1 cup sugar
2 TBS corn starch
2 TBS water

Combine ingredients over medium heat until dissolved. Turn heat up and bring to a boil. Boil until thickened. Cool. Pour over fresh peach layer.

Chill pie at least one hour.

Key Lime Pie

Sunshine contest – Round 2, 8 Aug 10

Graham cracker crust- sure you can buy one, but making one is so much tastier:

1 ½ cups fine graham cracker crumbs
1/3 cup butter (about 6 tablespoons)
3 Tablespoons white sugar or 4 Tablespoons powdered sugar

Prepare crumbs either by rolling them or using the food processor. Melt the butter over low ( or microwave). Remove from heat and add crumbs and sugar, blending well. Turn the crumbs into an 8 or 9 inch pie pan, spread evenly and firmly over the bottom and sides. Use a flat bottomed cup to press down. Bake at 325 degrees for 7 to 10 minutes ( watch it) depending on the thickness of the crust to firm the crust. Cool and fill.


4 or 5 egg yolks
1 can sweetened condensed milk
½ cup key lime juice
½ tsp. cream of tartar

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Beat egg yolks on high until thick and light colored. Turn off mixer. Add milk and slowly mix. With mixer on, slowly add in half of the key lime juice then cream of tartar then the rest of the juice. Mix until blended.
Put in cooled crust and bake in the center of the oven until firm and dry to the touch (about 15 minutes). Let cool completely.

Serve with fresh whipped cream with just a touch of sugar and vanilla.

Lemon Raisin Pie

Robin, 23 June 09, in ‘Frelling Ratbag’ post

This is my variation on a recipe from one of my favourite cookbooks, whose name and notoriety have been seen on these virtual pages before:  All-Butter Fresh Cream Sugar-Packed No Holds Barred Baking Book by Judy Rosenberg.  The title says it all.

Lemon Raisin Pie

1 pie crust bottom:  there is no top crust to this pie.  Having said that, I recommend you make it in a deep pan and build the edge up a bit, so you may need more than a half-recipe of a two-crust pie.  Half-bake it:  about 10 minutes at 400°F, just till it’s beginning to show faint colour.  Cool.

1 ½ c golden raisins, or mixture of any kind of raisins you happen to have on hand.  All golden is very pretty, and probably looks most like you thought ahead and got your ingredients organised, but I rather like the speckled effect of golden with ordinary black, and maybe a few currants thrown in for make weight.  I’ve also made this with part cranberries, but I’m a big cranberry fan.  The clever boys and girls of the food industry have figured out a way to dry cranberries so they’re sweeter than fresh ones, but you may still need to adjust your sugar.

1 T grated lemon zest (I don’t have to remind you not to grate the white, do I?)

½ c lemon juice

¾ c chopped almonds or hazelnuts or a mixture.  I suggest you toast them first too.

1 stick lightly salted butter at room temp

½ c granulated sugar

¼ c dark brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

3 large eggs at room temp

Preheat oven to 350°F

Soak raisins and lemon zest in the lemon juice for at least 15 minutes.  If you’re going to make the pie this afternoon, you could put them in in the morning.  Add the nuts at the last minute, just as you’re putting the rest of the pie together.

Cream butter and sugar till light and fluffy.  It’s easier if you use an electric mixer.  Throw the cinnamon in at some point.  Add the eggs one at a time—remember to scrape the sides of the bowl a lot—mixing thoroughly but no more than that.  Mixture will look curdled.

Stir in the raisin mixture and pour into the crust.

Bake 40-45 minutes.  The centre should be just set, but it’ll be paler than the edges.  It’ll still be soft though.  It’ll set better as it cools.  Let cool THOROUGHLY before you try to cut it.

Warning:  this is seriously rich.

I always start my pies off with tin foil around the crimped edge, to prevent it browning too soon and being wrecked by the time the filling is cooked through.  Take it off, if you use it, about halfway through.

Paper Bag Apple Pie

Sun_star_n_moon22, Recipe thread, 25 December 08

This recipe I got from my hairdresser, who swore to the high heavens that it was the best apple pie recipe that ever existed. The thing that makes it different than other apple pie recipes is that you cook it in a brown paper bag. (One from the grocery store works just fine). You would think the brown paper bag would catch on fire in the oven, but my hairdresser swore that it didn’t. And God knows, you don’t argue with your hairdresser. It turns out she was right. So now Im sharing the recipe with you!

I hope you enjoy it!


1 unbaked pie shell
4-5 large apples (2 1/2 pounds)
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons lemon juice

For the topping:
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 butter

Peel and core apples , then slice them thinly. Place apples, sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice in the pie shell. Combine topping ingredients in a bowl and spread evenly over the apple mixture. Slide pie into a heavy brown bag, fold bag and fasten with either staples or paper clips. Place on a cookie sheet and bake at 425° F for one hour. Split bag open and remove pie and let cool.

Hatbox Pie

Robin: In Honour: August 10, 2008

Hatbox Pie

So called because if you use a hatbox, there may be enough room.  The original recipe tells you to make it in a 9″ pie plate.  They are out of their tiny minds.  Try a 9- or 10″ springform pan.

1 c all-purpose flour

1 c jumbo oats (ie large flakes uncooked oatmeal:  the stuff goes by a lot of different names)

2/3 c dark brown sugar

½ tsp baking powder

½ c soft slightly salted butter

Mix together till crumbly.  Reserve 1 cup, press the rest on bottom and sides of springform pan.  Spread a generous 1 c cranberry sauce over crust;  sprinkle the 1 cup crumbs over sauce and pat gently.  350° 20-25 minutes.  Cool thoroughly.

½ c confectioner’s/icing sugar

2 T milk

1 ½ tsp GENUINE vanilla EXTRACT, no ersatz flavouring

3 oz soft cream cheese

2c sweetened whipped cream (so you use about 1 T sugar per cup when you beat it)

Blend all but whipped cream with electric mixer; fold cream in gently last.  Spoon carefully over crust.  Store in refrigerator.  Have lots of friends over when you make it, because the crust will go soggy after a few days.

Pumpkin Pie

Robin, 26 November 2008, main post (Thanksgiving Eve)

3 biggish eggs

2/3 c brown sugar, packed down hard

2 c fresh cooked pumpkin (it’s really worth cooking your own, instead of getting it out of a tin, and it’s dead easy, you just have to remember to allow the extra lead time)

1 tsp ground ginger

1½ tsp gr cinnamon

½ tsp gr allspice

¼ tsp gr cloves

¼ tsp gr cardamom

¾ c heavy cream

¼ c half and half

One-crust pie crust lining a deep 9″ pie plate (you are making your own pie crust, aren’t you?)

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Beat eggs till light.  Then beat the sugar in a little at a time–I do this by hand, crumbling and sprinkling with the hand that isn’t holding the spoon/electric beater.  You can do this quite quickly but I think it works better than just dumping a dense mass of brown sugar in your bowl and hacking at it.  Stir in pumpkin, then stir in cream.  Pour into your crust.

Bake at 425° for 12 minutes, then reduce to 325° and bake for another 40-50 minutes till the filling is set.  (This is so dependent on your oven.  The original recipe tells you to start at 450° but 450° turns things black in my world.  Unless I want charcoal, I don’t go above 425.°)  I’m not a big fan of testing it with a knife, but the pie should be more or less all the same colour right through the centre,  no dark damp spot, and you can also tell if it’s done by touching near the edge lightly with a finger and then the centre.  They should have the same texture.  (Warning:  touch lightly and I mean lightly.  Not only will you make a mess if it’s not done–which is what I have against sticking a knife in it–but wet filling will stick to your finger.  Wet hot filling, comprenez?)

The original recipe tells you to decorate with pecan halves.  This is very pretty, but I don’t (didn’t) do it.  I prefer to praline my pecans first:  they go a treat with pumpkin pie that way, although you hate yourself in the morning.

Tart of Darkness

AncientHarp in the forum Recipe Thread: November 9, 2008

I thought this might be appropriate for the new release of Sunshine… I found it on Recipezaar:


Text from website:



For the coulis

* 225 g raspberries (fresh or frozen)
* icing sugar

For the tarts

* 2 sheets phyllo pastry (11 x 14cm)
* 25 g unsalted butter, melted
* 2 teaspoons golden caster sugar
* 150 ml balsamic vinegar
* 1 teaspoon fresh coarse ground black pepper
* 500 g strawberries, halved

To serve

* icing sugar, for dusting
* mint sprig, to decorate


1. Heat oven to 200C/400°F.
2. Process the raspberries in a food processor until smooth and push through a sieve. Add enough icing sugar to sweeten to your liking.
3. Spread one sheet of pastry out on your work surface. Brush with the melted butter and sprinkle with the sugar. Place the second sheet on top and brush with more butter.
4. Cut the doubled up pastry into eight squares. Take one square and place another on top rotated 90 degrees so you have a star shape of pastry.
5. Press your pastry stars into 10cm tins and bake for 5 – 6 mins until golden.
6. Place the balsamic vinegar in a large pan and bring to the boil until reduced by half. Add the pepper and strawberries and cook over a very low heat for 3 – 4 mins until just softening, leave aside to cool.
7. When ready to serve place a case on a plate and fill with the balsamic strawberries and juices. Dust with the icing sugar and decorate with the mint. Serve the raspberry coulis at the side.

Glazed Blueberry Pie

Libby, 20 August 08, comment to ‘Alternative Ginger Persons’


I offer you the quintessential blueberry pie recipe. This is based on year of research visiting friends who live in a blueberry field. My husband loves to pick berries and each day we tried different recipes for using them. (This was many years ago, well before menopause was even a thought in my mind) We scarffed down all the creations, but agree that this is THE BEST. It also works nicely with raspberries, too.


1 quart fresh blueberries (you may want more to fill the crust)
1/4 cup sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup cold water
2 tablespoons lemon juice (maybe more if you like it)
**Cook all above until thick, but not solid, stirring constantly
3/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon butter
**Put berries in a pre-baked pie shell. Pour the mixture over them.
Serve with whipped cream

If you need a pie crust recipe, this is a good one for a double crust from an old Fannie Farmer cookbook.
Sift 2 cups pastry or 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour with 1 teaspoon salt
Cut in 2/3 cup shortening
Then add 1/3 cup ICE water

For a pre-baked crust, baked 450 degrees F for about 12 minutes until it’s looks prettily browned. (I assume ‘you’ know to weigh the crust with dry beans while baking it empty. Otherwise it will puff up like crazy.)

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