My Dear Sweet Pumpkin...
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Saturday, November 1, 2008

My Dear Sweet Pumpkin...

I needed a fix, and I needed it now.  But Paris was not serving up pumpkin pie–ANYWHERE.  So I took matters into my own hands.  I printed some recipes, approximated some measurements, and took the plunge.

The hardest part (well, not really hard) was finding canned pumpkin.  Thanks to Bon Marché, one of the classy department stores in Paris, I was able to find a section in the gourmet grocery dedicated to the USA and its products.  I didn’t recognize any of the brands, b

ut I found canned pumpkin for about 3 Euros all the same.  Naturally I bought 3 cans.

The pie was surprisingly easy to make.  I used a few different recipes to accommodate changes in ingredients (example, there is no evaporated milk here, just a much sweeter condensed milk).  But I mixed the eggs, sugars, milks, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pumpkin together until it was a creamy consistency.

The next hurdle was the crust, since Paris doesn’t sell pie shells like they do in the US.  I had to go buy a metal pie tin (reusable at least!).  Then I bought a rolled-up tart shell that you lay into the pie pan.  I filled it up with the mixture, gave the crust a quick egg wash, and popped it in my Celsius oven.  Thank you, Google for converting 350 degrees Fahrenheit to Celsius.

The result was a delicious-looking golden pie and an apartment perfumed with cinnamon and nutmeg.  Amazing!  The next morning, I toted the pie through the Parisian metro where I received all sorts of stares of confusion.  Pie, in the metro?  What can this mean?

I arrived safely at work where my French colleagues were eager to try this odd pastry.  The results were unanimous.  By 10AM the pan was nearly empty, but for a small morsel for the work study student.  It was sweet, but surprisingly pumpkin-tasting, unlike any pie I had tried in the States, and dare I say, better than any I had tried in the states!  Cut back on the sugar, people, it’s a PUMPKIN pie, after all! 

Fall is here!

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