“It’s not far I can walk down the block to Table Talk
Close my eyes make the pies all day
Plastic cap on my hair I used to mind now I don’t care
I used to mind now I don’t care ’cause I’m great” – Patty Griffin
When I was little my grandfather used to tell me this story of one of the first jobs he had as a kid. He would go into local stores and look for mold on all of the Table Talk pies that they were selling. His job was to take a little pocket knife and scrape the mold off of the bottom crust and place the pie back on the shelf. It was the depression and totally indicative of the times and the spirit of that era.
Why all this talk about pies and making pies.. well I made several different versions of pumpkin pies for Thanksgiving and wanted to share some recipes, links and love. Kate thinks I am crazy, and often calls me a baking renegade. Thanksgiving week was no different. I decided to make four pies this year, one to keep and the rest to give away. They were all pumpkin based, one traditional, a vegan option, and even a gluten-free paleo friendly option! Now you get the picture. For real.
The traditional pumpkin pies were for my family and for the staff that volunteered to work Thanksgiving morning at Bloc, one of the cafes I manage. This had a buttermilk and butter crust and Kate’s Dad’s pumpkin pie filling recipe. The results… amazing! The crust was evenly browned and crisp and never got soggy even after chilling in the fridge overnight!
The crust recipe is from Joy the Baker’s blog and it is her Dad’s Perfect Pie Crust recipe.
Here’s the link: Dad’s Sweet Potato Pie
I don’t want to share Denny’s exact pumpkin pie filling recipe here, so I have found a similar vintage pumpkin pie recipe that will do the trick.
Carnation’s Famous Pumpkin Pie from 1959 (hint: leave out the cloves in the recipe)
- I made the crust in the food processor and it still came out amazing
- I didn’t have buttermilk on hand, so I made my own with 1/3 c whole milk and 1/3 tsp cider vinegar
- I had extra pie crust & filling since I used recyclable pie tins for my lucky pie recipients, so I made a mini pie for Kate & I
Next up…Vegan Mini Pies, delivered swiftly to the folks that volunteered to work at Diesel on Thanksgiving morning! The crust is made from coconut oil, not shortening and is soy free. It remained very light in color, but yielded a very sturdy, yet flaky crust. I found this recipe on a blog that is amazing and super cute, Loves and Lemons, it was the complete recipe, the author provided.
Again, I made the crust in the food processor, no kneading or hand cutting in the fat for me! The only change I made was that I used canned coconut milk instead of almond milk in the filling, because it is what I had on hand.
Mini Vegan Pumpkin Pies
Lastly, a recipe I had been wanting to try out since the first Fall leaf hit the pavement. Paleo Pumpkin Cashew Cheesecake from Paleo Fondue. One word Y-U-M! Kate isn’t even a fan of cheesecake and she loved this recipe. In typical Jess fashion I did make a substitution. I thought the unsweetened coconut crust that she used in her recipe was too “healthy” for my liking at the time, so I made my own crust recipe up:
Gluten Free Ginger Snap Crust
makes enough for a 9″ spring form pan
3/4 package of Mi-Del Gluten Free Ginger Snaps
1 TBS melted virgin coconut oil
pinch of all natural sea salt
1) Pulse ginger snaps and salt in a food processor until evenly sized crumbs are created, graham cracker cust
2) Once ginger snaps are processed, add the coconut oil and pulse until crumbs look evenly coated with oil and wet
3) Coat the bottom of your spring form pan with the crumbs and evenly press the layer, ensuring that the mixture goes about 1 inch up the sides of the pan
4) Place pan on a baking sheet and bake crust in a 350 degree oven for 8-10 mins, check frequently you don’t want your crust to burn. You are just baking the crust enough to set it.
5) Cool crust completely then refrigerate while you make the cheesecake filling.
- In the photo above I made coconut whipped cream, using chilled canned full fat coconut milk and powdered sugar.
There you have it, our Thanksgiving recapped in pie recipes. You should try all of them, but if that is too overwhelming, just take my advice and bake at least one of the recipes above. It will be worth it.