Pumpkin pie is without a doubt the most popular Thanksgiving dessert, and there are as many ways to make it as there are families. Some people buy frozen ones and simply pop them in the oven, others make semi-homemade pies by mixing canned pumpkin with eggs and evaporated milk. Truly homemade pumpkin pies start with nice, fresh and fleshy pie pumpkin. Just cool and add homemade whipped cream to enjoy your newest holiday tradition.
Get your pie pumpkin. These are sweet, smaller, and with a less grainy texture than jack-o-lantern pumpkins. They are usually sold in grocery stores from fall to winter, and they are sometimes called sugar pumpkins. These pumpkins are just six to eight inches in diameter.
Prepare your pumpkin. First wash the pumpkin, then cut it in half and scrape out the insides. An ice cream scoop works to easily scrape out the stringy stuff and the seeds.
Cook the pumpkin by steaming it in a pot on the stove. You can use a large double pot steamer, or just a big pot with a steamer basket. It should take roughly 20 to 30 minutes to cook until soft.
Scoop out the pumpkin with a big spoon and put it in a bowl. It should come off pretty easily and sometimes the skin will just peel back. Pour off any free-standing liquid.
Puree the pumpkin. You can use a blender, food processor, or even a hand mixer to make the puree smooth.
Mix the pie ingredients. Add all of the ingredients from the list to a mixing bowl and beat well with a hand mixer.
Pour the mixture into the crust. For a deep pie, fill it up to about one-quarter inch from the top. The filling may seem runny, but it will firm up as it bakes.
Bake the pie for 15 minutes at 425 degrees, then turn the oven down to 350 degrees and bake until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. This should take an additional 45 to 60 minutes.
Cool and eat! The pie can be eaten warm or chilled, with or without whipped cream or ice cream toppings.