I had to do a little research into pumpkins yesterday and today. Why? Because even though I've been told there was canned pumpkin to be had here in south africa, we have yet to find it. Ahem! So, off I go to work with the next best thing (or maybe a BETTER thing) a REAL pumpkin. Like from a vine. Yes, ma'am.
Let's just say I'm a Libby's kind of girl. I like simple, and I'll say it again. I like simple, as in canned pumpkin. Plop it out, and you are ready to go to town.
Did you know that canned pumpkin is already cooked? "Not I said the fly.." That's one of the first things I learned. You have to cook the pumpkin first. See, here I'm used to just putting the puree into a saucepan and heating it up and adding all the spices. So, what temp? How long? Seems that it can be roasted at 350 for about an hour and it will get all nice and carmelized.
My pumpkin pieces were cubed into about 2" chunks, and I just roasted them covered with foil for about an hour. I'm not sure if all gourds smell the same while cooking, but this pumpkin smelled a lot like butternut squash. I smashed it all up and I came out with about 4 cups of puree. I then added all my spices and gelatin, egg yolks and milk and cooked it until it started to boil. Then chill it to set up the gelatin a little. Now the fun can begin and I can pick up where I left off ( more familiar territory and not by the seat of my pants. I'm not a wingin' it type of cook remember?) on my recipe, or rather my grandma's recipe. (That's my crappy handwriting though.)
And if you are making this from a fresh pumpkin, I figured one 15 oz. can is about 1.75 cups of puree. If you find the gelatin not in small envelopes and instead like buying in bulk, (I had no choice here.) one envelope is about 2.5 tsp of gelatin.
I also tend to double this recipe to fill two pie shells.
And yes, you ARE making a meringue and you ARE making whipped cream and folding them both into the chilled puree there at the end. Makes for a really nice fluffy pie. Thank Grandma!
Tip* Water boils at 203 F here at almost 5000ft above sea level. Adjust accordingly.