Thursday, 29 November 2012

so very thankful

i am thankful for family, my kids, my health, in particular my sisters health and her miraculous healing from stage 3 cancer. we spent thanksgiving together and talked of the fact that exactly a year ago we were together and she was showing us her painful and bloated tummy. the doctors kept sending her away with antibiotics or diet-tips. six months later she was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer. 6 months on and she today had Scan results showing everything to be looking good and healthy. she has in the meantime recovered from major surgery and trauma and married a wonderful man. i am so so thankful to God for healing and restoring my wonderful and precious little sis who i adore. my sisters are my kindred spirits - i'm feeling thankful today for them.  and all of us love a good PIE! as we are half american we gathered for thanksgiving and i was in charge of pumpkin and pecan pie. yum! i had a slightly stressful pie-making session with little Miss M (too many things on the go at once) but had to relax and embrace the kitchen getting completely covered in dirty dishes and flour!!

for the pastry 
(for 1 pie - double this recipe for 2 pies - you will have plenty left-over too)
1. crumble together with fingers - 450g flour and 250g butter - until well combined
2. stir in 150g sugar
3. crack in 3 eggs and stir until well combined
4. push the mix together in to a ball using your hands - but try to touch it as little as possible
5. wrap the ball of pastry in cling film and put in the fridge for half an hour.
6. using lots of flour on your surface and rolling pin, roll out the pastry to 1cm thick and line a buttered pie dish

these pies are basically a saucepan of gooey melted sweetness poured in to a pie crust.
i made the two pies at the same time so had both the fillings bubbling away.

pumpkin pie
1. cut a pumpkin in to quarters and scrape out the insides. baste with olive oil and roast at 180C for 40mins. remove from oven and allow to cool before cutting the skin off the flesh and blending the flesh in to a pulp.
2. keep the oven heated to 180C
3. whisk 2 eggs and set aside
4. in a saucepan, gently melt and whisk together: 50g dark brown sugar, 150ml double cream, 1/2tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp grated nutmeg, 1/2tsp ground allspice, 1/4 tsp ground ginger
5. add the eggs and whisk
6. add the blended pumpkin and whisk until well combined
7. pour the mix in to the pastry case and bake for 40mins
8. once the pie has cooled put it in the fridge
9. serve chilled with a big dollop of whipped cream

pecan pie
1. in a strong saucepan, melt 125g unsalted butter, 125g golden syrup, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 215g brown sugar. once all melted and gooey, set aside to cool for 10 mins.
2. meanwhile beat 3 eggs and fill the pie crust with 300g pecan halves
3. stir the eggs in to the melted butter mix and pour the mix over the pecans
4. bake for 45 mins
5. serve at room temperature, do not try to reheat.

while the pies were in the oven, i put little Miss M to work cleaning up the devastation in the kitchen

and here they are. pecan pie is unbelievably sweet and delicious. how could you go wrong with butter, brown sugar and golden syrup? pumpkin pie is not so sweet and a bit slimey. i do enjoy it in small quantities and dolloped with whipped cream.
hubby carving up at our thanksgiving feast made by my talented brother. the big dish is a Nigella Lawson stuffing made with cornbread - yum!
after pigging out, we rolled out the pies for breakfast the next day and ate pumpkin pie with all the leftovers for lunch. it went very well with turkey, veg and cranberry sauce. 


  1. That's a lot to be thankful for, long may it continue. Love the simplicity of the pumpkin pie - my favourite. I have always used tinned pumpkin but much prefer your method

    1. yes i'd like to try with tinned pumpkin - i've heard its pretty good .and probably much easier! x

  2. Definitely a lot to be thankful for - sisters are amazing!

  3. Teared up reading this, Becca. You and your sisters (and chef Matthew, too) are amazing. So thankful for Triona's continued, good news!

    Christine P

    1. thank you Christine. it's been a rollercoaster of a year for all of us. so happy we are where we are now. lots of love B xx

  4. that's amazing about your sister, I'm glad she's doing well.
    I love your pie, haven't had pumpkin pie in ages, might have to make one for Xmas!

    1. thanks Helen. yes it's all a huge relief! B x

  5. I just bought a pie plate from a ceramic artist today. She told me it makes an amazing crispy crust. I can't wait to try one of these recipes in it.

    So thankful for you sis xo

    1. wow ceramic artist pie plate - sounds very cool. didn't think about the dish affecting the pie but i guess it would. let me know how it works out... love you xx

  6. Lovely post, fantastic about your Sister and her strength (which I know she must have shown a lot of over this past year) Wonderful news. Looks like you had a fab Thanksgiving x

    1. thank you. yes huge amounts of courage!!! and yes we hada lovely thanksgiving... it's such a nice occasion to get together.


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