Photo by Sara Calvosa Olson
Pumpkin pie used to be by far my favorite thing. Now a butternut squash version of this pie, with a nice Santa-shaped hat of whipped cream dusted in fresh nutmeg, has usurped its place. Butternut squash is bright, sweet, full of its own beautiful flavor, and thick in texture. It doesn’t require pumpkin’s heavy doses of added sweeteners and spices to be appetizing. A little maple syrup, a couple of spices, eggs, and cream create a butternut squash custard just waiting to be baked into a pie.
BUTTERNUT SQUASH PIE WITH WHOLE WHEAT CRUST
WHOLE WHEAT PIE CRUST
- 8 ounces Llano Seco Sonora flour frozen
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon unrefi ned sea salt
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter frozen
- 5–6 tablespoons filtered water ice cold
- 1 medium butternut squash
- 2/3 cup maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 2 pasture-raised eggs
- 1 cup cream
- ½ cup milk
- Make the pie crust: In a bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Using a cheese grater, grate the frozen butter over the flour mixture and toss to combine. Slowly stir in 5 tablespoons of ice cold water and knead the dough quickly to keep the butter cold.
- You may need to add more water as needed to achieve a shaggy dough. Divide the dough in half, and press each half flat into a disc, wrapping one in plastic wrap for another time (you can also freeze this for a much later time). Roll one disc of dough out on a floured surface into a 14-inch circle and lay over a 9-inch pie plate. Cut and fold the edges and place in the freezer until ready to bake.
- Make butternut squash puree: preheat oven to 400°. While you wait, cut the squash down the middle, lengthwise, and scoop out the seeds. Save the seeds to roast with olive oil and sea salt as a garnish for your finished pie. (Or snacks while you wait.) Lay cut-side down onto a parchment-lined sheet pan and pierce the skin a few times with a knife. Roast in the oven for 30–45 minutes until the flesh is soft and scoopable. Once cool enough to handle, scoop out the meat and use a fork or potato masher to mash it.
- Place squash in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir frequently until the squash is slightly caramelized, aromatic, and bubbly. Remove from the heat but keep hot. Keep the oven set to 400°. In a bowl, mix together the maple syrup, salt, and spices. Fold into the hot squash in the saucepan.
- Beat eggs, cream, and milk together in a separate bowl and whisk into the squash until smooth. Immediately pour the hot squash filling into the chilled, unbaked, unpricked pie crust. Slide the pie into the oven and bake for 25–30 minutes, until the crust is golden and only an inch circle in the center of the pie remains jiggly. Cool on a wire rack before serving with whipped cream and a shower of freshly-grated nutmeg.
Kala Riddle is a nutritionist turned sourdough baker, who enjoys celebrating the seasons through cooking, growing, and sharing our most basic and personal connection: food. Keep up with her at www.untamedbakeshop.com