My wife Roxanne’s Praline Pumpkin Pie is a slice of the autumn season with the pungent flavors of cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and ginger wafting throughout the house. With the crunch of Louisiana pecans and the punch of praline liqueur, this is a pumpkin pie to write about.
Black iron pies are a specialty of the Graham kitchen, and my wife Roxanne loves to experiment with variations depending on the season. When fresh pumpkins start showing up in the produce bins and roadside markets, we know it’s fall. There is no other farm-to-table ingredient that defines a season more than pumpkins, and we have an endless list of sweet and savory recipes to use them.
This Praline Pumpkin Pie takes a couple of shortcuts to arrive at a delicious destination. Carving, seeding, and baking a pumpkin is admirable, and I’ve done it on occasion, but with canned pumpkin pulp conveniently at the ready, I am all for the trade-off. In fact, canned pumpkin is one of those rare products that is better than fresh; the consistency is all-important in recipes like this one.
And I know I should be making my piecrust from scratch, but I just can’t resist the pre-packaged rolled crusts from the refrigerated case of my local supermarket. If you are one of those scratch bakers that scoff at my suggestion, then I salute you with the utmost respect (and hope you don’t send me a berating comment).
As for the praline liqueur, I keep a bottle of this stuff hidden away for a variety of recipes or for just sipping over ice during the holidays. There are several Praline liqueur brands on the market, but the Sazerac Company from New Orleans makes my favorite. If you live in the South, that product should be available in any well-stocked retail liquor store. With its rich mahogany color, it adds a background flavor of dark roasted nuts and burnt sugar to this Praline Pumpkin Pie that provides a base for launching the pecan streusel topping that defines the praline experience.
Join Roxanne and me, and get into your kitchen this fall and whip up a pumpkin pie. This Praline Pumpkin Pie is the best way we know to taste the delicious flavors of the season.
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger
- ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon praline liqueur
- ½ stick cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks
- ¾ cup rough chopped pecans
- Flour, for rolling
- 2 (10-inch) refrigerated piecrusts
- 1 beaten egg, for brushing
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 (29-ounce) can of pumpkin, such as Libby’s Pure Pumpkin
- ½ cup dark brown sugar
- ½ cup canned evaporated milk
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon sugarcane molasses
- 2 tablespoons Praline liqueur
- pinch of salt
- 3 large eggs, plus 1 egg yolk
- In a stainless steel mixing bowl, add the sugars, spices, and flour. Blend and add the praline liqueur and the cold butter in chunks. With your fingers or a pastry blender, mix the ingredients and incorporate the butter into the dry ingredients until it becomes crumbly in texture. Add the pecans and evenly distribute throughout the mixture. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Dust the counter with bench flour and add the two piecrusts. Position one on top of the other and begin rolling until they come together and spread out to a 14-inch diameter circle.
- In a 10-inch black iron skillet coated with non-stick spray, add the crust and fill the interior of the pan. Tuck the edges of the crust around the skillet in a rough and rustic manner. Brush the edges of the dough with the beaten egg and sprinkle with sugar. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the pumpkin pulp, sugar, milk, spices, molasses, liqueur, and salt. Whisk together until blended. Add the eggs and the yolk and whisk until fully incorporated.
- Pour the filling into the piecrust and smooth out the top.
- Add the streusel topping to the top being careful to evenly distribute the pecans.
- Bake on the center rack until the pie filling sets and the crust is golden brown, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
YOUR SEAT AT THE TABLE: If you like this Cajun cooking story and Cajun recipe then accept my personal invitation to subscribe by entering your email at the bottom or top right of this page. It’s quick and painless. You will receive an email alert and be the first to see when new Cajun cooking stories and Cajun recipes are added. Thanks, George.