Chai-Spiced Pumpkin Pie

The spices of chai tea give this pumpkin pie a familiar yet distinctive flavor.

by - Posted on Oct 24, 2014

A slice of Beth's Chai-Spiced Pumpkin Pie

This delicious dessert will please your family, friends and guests from Thanksgiving all the way through Christmas, New Year's Day and beyond!

Ingredients

Dough
¼ c. (½ stick) butter, chilled and cut into large chunksDash of salt
¼ c. vegetable shortening, chilled½ c. ice water, just enough to moisten dough
1 ¼ c. flour, plus at least ¼ c. extra for rolling 

Filling
2 teabags of black chai-spiced tea or 2 to 3 Tbsp. loose tea½ c. sugar
1 ½ c. pumpkin purée (canned is ok) chilled½ tsp. salt
3 eggs1 c. heavy cream
⅔ c. brown sugar1 tsp. vanilla

Topping
1 c. heavy cream½ tsp. ground ginger
1 Tbsp. sugar 

Preparation

Dough
1. In a deep, large bowl, work the butter and shortening into the flour and salt with your hands until you have almond- and pea-sized lumps of butter.

2. Drizzling in ice water a little at a time, “toss” the water around with your fingers spread, as if the flour were a salad and your hands were the tongs. Don’t spend a lot of time mixing the dough, just focus on getting it moistened. With each addition of water, toss about four times and then stop, add water and repeat.

3. When the dough holds together on its own, do a “squeeze test.” If it falls apart, you need to add more water. If it is soggy and sticky, you might need to sprinkle flour onto it until the wetness is balanced out. The key is not to overwork the dough! It takes very little time and you’ll be tempted to keep touching it, but don’t!

4. Now take the ball of dough and form it into a disk shape. (Any leftover dough could be used for an extra mini-pie.) Sprinkle flour under and on top of your dough to keep it from sticking to your rolling surface. Roll the dough to a thinness that is almost transparent.

5. Measure the size of the dough by holding your pie plate above it. It’s big enough if there’s extra width to compensate for the depth and width of your dish, plus 1 to 2 inches overhang.

6. Slowly and gently lift the dough off the rolling surface, nudging flour under the scraper as you lift, and fold the dough back. When you are sure your dough is free from the surface, bring your pie dish close to it and then drag your dough over to your dish. (Holding the folded edge will give you a better grip and keep your dough from tearing.)

7. Place the folded edge halfway across your dish, allowing the dough of the covered half to drape over the side. Carefully unfold the dough until it lies fully across the pie dish.

8. Lift the edges and let gravity ease the dough down to sit snugly in the dish, using the light touch of a finger if you need to push any remaining air space out of the corners as you go. Trim excess dough to about 1 inch from the dish edge, leaving ample dough to make crimped, fluted edges.

Filling
If you’re using teabags, open up the sachets and grind up the contents. Mix all the ingredients and pour into pie shell. Bake at 425°F for 15 minutes, then turn oven down to 350°F and bake about 40 minutes or until center is set. Set aside to cool.

Topping
Using an electric mixer (or by hand!), beat cream, sugar and ginger until peaks form. Once pie is completely cooled, top with ginger whipped cream. Keep pie chilled. But you’ll eat it so fast it probably won’t ever make it back to the fridge after that first—and second and third—slice.

Serves 8.

Nutritional Information:  Calories: 550; Fat: 36g; Cholesterol: 165mg; Sodium: 250mg; Total Carbohydrates: 51g; Dietary Fiber: 3g; Sugars: 30g; Protein: 7g.

Don't miss Beth's inspiring story about how her new neighbors made her feel at home at Christmas.

Ms. American Pie book coverBeth Howard is the author of Ms. American Pie: Buttery Good Pie Recipes and Bold Tales from the American Gothic House (Race Point Publishing; 2014). Photographs by Matthew Gilson.

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