When you think of Halloween, glowing Jack O’ Lanterns with a big, carved grin might be the first thing that comes to mind. But when I see pumpkin, I think pie!

In America, sweet pumpkin pie is a classic end to an autumnal meal, like Thanksgiving dinner. In Australia, it’s more common to spot a pumpkin in your roast, not in your dessert, so some people are hesitant to try it.[fold]

I first tried pumpkin pie while holidaying in America, and although I was a bit dubious at first, was soon seduced by the smooth, orange custard and aromatic spices.

In the States you can buy canned pumpkin with spices already in it, but I like to prepare the pumpkin from scratch and add my own mix of spices. Serve this one with maple cream at your Halloween party – it’ll be a hit.

What you’ll need:

For the pastry

125g chilled unsalted butter
1/4 cup icing sugar
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1-2 tablespoons iced water

For the pumpkin filling

3/4 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup soft brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
2 large eggs
430g butternut pumpkin
350ml evaporated milk

For the maple cream

250ml thickened cream
1 1/2 tablespoon maple syrup

Method:

Prepare the pumpkin:

Set the oven for 180 degrees. Chop the pumpkin into pieces and roast it for about 30 minutes, or until it’s soft and the knife goes through easily. Discard the skins and put the pumpkin flesh in a food processor. Whizz until smooth.

Make the pastry:

To make the pastry, cut butter into cubes and pop in the freezer for fifteen minutes to chill. Put the flour, icing sugar and chilled butter in the food processor and pulse a few times until it resembles breadcrumbs. Add 1-2 tablespoons of chilled water and pulse until it’s just clumping together, and then tip into a bowl. Press mixture together gently into a disc then pop into the fridge for 30 minutes.

Once chilled, roll out mixture between two sheets of baking paper, then place into a lined pie dish. Push the dough against the sides of the dish, trim the excess and crimp the edges. Put in the freezer for 15 minutes. Preheat oven to 220 degrees.

Make the filling:

Mix together sugar, salt and spices. Whisk eggs, then add to pumpkin puree with the mixed sugar and spice. Once combined, gradually pour in the evaporated milk and mix until smooth.

Pour filling into chilled pie shell, then place pie on middle oven rack and bake for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 170 degrees, then rotate pie 180 degrees, so that the part that was facing the back of the oven is facing the front. Bake for another 20 minutes, or until a knife inserted near the centre comes out clean. If the crusts start to get too brown, cover the edges with tin foil.

Transfer pie to a wire rack and let cool for two hours, and then serve with maple cream.

To make maple cream:

Whip together the cream and maple syrup until soft peaks form.

Camilla is launching her website soon. In the meantime, follow her on Instagram at @bakewellandco.

Bakewell & Co
For orders (in Melbourne):
bakewellandco@gmail.com
0450 385 653