Food Fight: Pumpkin or Pecan Pie? Both! Gluten Free

November 4, 2011

When Thanksgiving menu planning starts getting serious, the biggest question in our house is always, "What kind of pie!?" With as few as 3 of us in town for the big day, baking two separate pies always seems deliciously excessive, tempting us to gluttony. But what's to do? We have an ardent pumpkin lover (me), a bourbon pecan fanatic and a neutral middleground who makes the final call mere days before Thanksgiving! While I've already expounded on the virtues of the Split Decision Pie Pan, this recipe offers a much more appealing option -- at least in this food fight! Even better, this gluten free recipe is both incredibly delicious and frighteningly easy!

Gluten Free Pumpkin Pecan Pie

1 recipe for gluten free pie crust
Pumpkin Filling
1 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin puree
2⁄3 cup heavy cream
1⁄2 cup (packed) light brown sugar
1 large egg + 1 large egg yolk
2 tsp dark rum
1⁄2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1⁄2 tsp ground cinnamon
1⁄4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp salt

Pecan Filling:
1⁄2 cup corn syrup (light or dark)
1⁄4 cup (packed) light brown sugar
2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1⁄2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1⁄4 tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch of salt
1 1⁄2 cups (about 7 oz.) pecan halves or pieces

To start, prepare your favorite gluten free single-crust pie (you can either freeze half or find a standard single-crust recipe) and refrigerate until ready to use.

For the pumpkin filling, combine all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until smooth.

For the pecan filling, whisk together all ingredients (except pecans!) until smooth.

Preheat oven to 450F. Roll dough out to form a 12-inch circle on a floured counter, turning dough over frequently and keeping counter floured. Slide dough into the fridge for about 20 minutes to rest and firm up. Fit dough into a buttered 9-inch pie plate and cut excess dough to leave a 1⁄4"–1⁄2" overhang. Fold the edge of the dough under itself, creating a slight lip. Use this dough to create a fluted or decorative edge. 

To assemble, pulse the pumpkin filling one final time before popping any bubbles in the batter with a few quick raps against the counter. Pour filling into pie crust and top evenly with pecans. Pour the pecan filling over the pecan and pumpkin layers, pushing any floating pecans back to the bottom. Bake for 10 minutes then reduce heat to 300F and continue baking for another 40-45 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Let pie cool on a wire rack and serve just warm or at room temperature.

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