Scrumptious Halloween Pumpkin Pie
Halloween is almost upon us, and with it comes shelves bursting with sugary lollies, chocolates, pies and pastries. In other words, the nightmare horror story that it always promises. In preparation for this time of ghoulish gluttony I always make sure there is a smorgasbord of delicious home-made treats that yield the powers to satisfy my sweet tooth AND nourish my body. As pumpkins are inarguably the number one (edible) Halloween mascot, I have chosen to stick to tradition and give them centre stage with this amazing Pumpkin Pie. There are many different types of pumpkins out there - depending on where in the world you are - but make sure to steer clear of the traditional bright orange ones (the ones you use for carving) as they are not famed for their flavour.
Pumpkins get their amazing orange colour from what’s known as beta-carotene (the same stuff that makes carrots orange). Beta-carotene is a powerful anti-oxidant that is converted into vitamin A, which is thought to reduce the risk of certain types of cancer, skin regeneration and is also an essential vitamin in maintaining good sight.
This recipe is a great way to slip a vegetable into the realm of a treat, which is generally quite hard to do. The aromatic mixture of delicious warm spices lend beautifully to the sweetness of the pumpkin. The nuts provide a creaminess to the affair that make you feel like your eating something seriously naughty, without having to resort to dairy. Cradled within a deliciously crunchy biscuit base, this pie provides the perfect harmony between the two consistencies.
Oh and don’t forget to keep your pumpkin seeds for baking and snacking on later! They are a great source of protein, iron, zinc and mono-unsaturated fats (good for heart health).
Preheat the oven to 150°C/300°F
120 g (1 cup) walnuts 150 g (1 cup) cashews 6 medjool dates – stones removed 1 egg white (reserve egg yolk) 40 g (1/2 cup) shredded coconut 2 tbsp honey 1/4 tsp salt
75 g (1/2 cup) cashews 60 g (1/2 cup) walnuts 3 eggs 1 egg yolk 150 g (1/2 cup) honey 1 tsp ginger 1 tsp cinnamon 1 tsp nutmeg 1 tsp allspice 1/2 tsp clove 1/2 tsp cardamom 1/4 tsp salt 450 g (2 cups) mashed pumpkin (cooked)
Line a 22 cm/9 inch spring form baking tin with non-stick baking paper.
Place the walnuts and cashews into a food processor and chop until very fine. Add the other ingredients and process until a dough begins to form.
Press the dough evenly into the prepared tin, covering the sides as well as the bottom.
Bake for 20 minutes on the lower shelf with the top of the tin at approximately the middle of the oven. Set aside and let cool.
For the filling place the cashews, walnuts, eggs and honey into a food processor and process until creamy.
Add the rest of the ingredients and keep processing until well combined and very smooth.
Pour the mixture into the pre-baked piecrust and bake on 150°C/300°F for 40 minutes or until the top feels firm to the touch.
Let cool completely before serving.