THIS week we have two recipes that offer fresh takes on traditional Thanksgiving desserts. Heida Bottrell sent in a recipe for frozen praline pumpkin torte that can be made ahead and serves up beautifully. And Jeanette Johnston of Keewatin sent in a versatile and delicious recipe for a free-form fruit pie.
Suzanne Martel recently moved and in the upheaval lost a favourite recipe for pumpkin pie. The recipe originally ran in the Brandon Sun in the 1970s and didn't use condensed or evaporated milk, making for a dark, spicy filling. Dorothee Touzin would like a recipe for apple pie cooked in a paper bag. And we have requests for two recipes from the late, lamented Eaton's department store. Nancy Morris's mother used to make scones that were sold at Eaton's -- flat wedges that were cooked in a cast iron frying pan. And Heather Hooper hopes somebody has a recipe for the mock duck balls sold at the Foodeteria. If you can help with a recipe request, have your own request, or a favourite recipe you'd like to share, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, fax it to 697-7412, or write to Recipe Swap, c/o Alison Gillmor, Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6. Please include your first and last name, address and telephone number.
Peachy plum galette
Pastry for a 22 cm (9 in) double-crust pie
750 ml (3 cups) sliced red or purple plums
750 ml (3 cups) peeled, sliced peaches
75 ml (1/3 cup) granulated sugar
45 ml (3 tbsp) all-purpose flour
1 egg yolk
5 ml (1 tsp) milk
30 ml (2 tbsp) granulated sugar
30 ml (2 tbsp) red current jelly, melted (optional)
Preheat oven to 220 C (425 F). Roll out pastry to a 35 cm (14 in) round, roll up on rolling pin and transfer to a baking sheet. In large bowl, toss fruit with 75 ml (1/3 cup) sugar and flour. Place fruit on pastry, spreading to within 5 cm (2 in) of edges and mounding in the centre. Gently fold pastry edge over the fruit to create a border, leaving fruit exposed in the centre. In small bowl, mix together egg yolk and milk and brush over the pastry. Sprinkle pastry and fruit with 30 ml (2 tbsp) sugar. Bake in 220 C (425 F) oven for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 190 C (375 F) and bake for 30 minutes longer or until fruit is tender and pastry lightly browned. If desired, brush melted jelly over fruit. Serve slightly warm. Makes 6-8 servings.
Tester's notes: Jeannette uses half peaches and half plums for a summery pie, and I used all plums this time for a more autumnal feel. This easy free-form pie tastes fresh and tart and looks great. I used a large flat baking stone: I sprinkled a little corn meal to keep the pastry from sticking and rolled the pastry out right onto the stone. When folding up the pastry, gently press to make sure there are no gaps, and then use the egg wash to seal.
Frozen praline pumpkin torte
946 ml (1 qt) praline or French vanilla ice cream, slightly softened*
500 ml (2 cups) pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
500 ml (2 cups) granulated sugar
10 ml (2 tsp) cinnamon
10 ml (2 tsp) nutmeg
2 ml (1/2 tsp) salt
375 ml (1 1/2 cup) whipping cream
additional whipped cream and chopped pecans for garnish
* Ice cream should be soft enough to spoon easily but not melting.
Put a 20 cm (8 in) springform pan in the freezer for at least 30 minutes to chill thoroughly. Spoon ice cream into chilled pan, pressing it onto the bottom and up sides with the back of a spoon or rubber spatula. Put several layers of plastic wrap over the ice cream to form a 1.25 cm (1/2 in) shell. Freeze for about 2 hours until firm. In a medium pot, mix pumpkin, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt until well blended. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, about 4 minutes or until mixture comes to a boil. Transfer to a large bowl and refrigerate at least 1 hour until completely cool.
Using electric mixer, whip cream in a medium bowl until soft peaks form. Gently fold whipped cream into pumpkin mixture. Remove plastic wrap from frozen ice cream and spoon pumpkin mixture over. Freeze at least 3 hours or overnight. Just before serving, remove pan sides and place on a serving plate. Garnish with whipped cream and pecans. Makes 12 servings.
Tester's notes: This lovely dessert takes traditional Thanksgiving pumpkin taste and gives it a cool, refreshing twist. It can also be made ahead, which is handy. I used butter pecan ice cream, and I decreased the nutmeg slightly because I find its flavour can be a bit overpowering. You can use candied pecans for garnish, but I was happy with chopped nuts and some whipping cream.