brûléed pumpkin pie with bourbon whipped cream

recipe, styling + photo by Kate Wood

brûléed pumpkin pie with bourbon whipped cream

You’ll need a kitchen torch to make this crispy-topped pie.

  • Crust
  • 1 3/4 cups flour, plus additional for rolling
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup chilled vegetable shortening, cut into pieces
  • 6 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 5 tablespoons (approximately) ice water
  • Filling
  • 1 15-ounce can pumpkin purée
  • 1 1/4 cups evaporated milk
  • 4 large eggs, divided
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • Topping
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  1. In bowl of a food processor, add flour, sugar, and salt and pulse to combine. Add shortening and butter, pulsing until evenly dispersed and mixture resembles pea-sized clumps. Begin adding ice water, 2 tablespoons at a time, until moist clumps begin to form. Remove dough from food processor, form it into a flat round disk, and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate 1 hour.
  2. When ready to bake pie, roll dough out on a well-floured surface into a 1/8-1/4-inch circle about an inch larger than your pie plate. Roll dough loosely back onto rolling pin and lift it into pie plate. Gently fit dough into pie plate and trim off any excess, leaving a 1-inch border around edge of plate. Fold lip of dough under so that it extends just over edge of pie plate and crimp edges as desired. Prick a few holes in bottom of dough with a fork. Place into freezer to chill briefly, about 15 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together pumpkin and evaporated milk. Add 3 eggs and brown and white sugar, stirring just until combined. Add remaining ingredients (reserving remaining egg for egg wash) and stir to combine. Set aside while you bake pie crust.
  5. When oven is preheated, remove pie plate from freezer and line with a piece of parchment paper. Use either pie weights or dry beans/rice to keep paper weighted down onto dough, and bake about 15 minutes.
  6. While baking, whisk remaining egg and 1 tablespoon water in a small bowl. Remove crust from oven, remove pie weights and parchment paper, brush entire crust with a thin layer of egg wash, and bake for an additional 5 minutes.
  7. Remove crust from oven, pour in filling, and bake for another 35 minutes or until center of pie is set and no longer too jiggly. About 10 minutes into baking, gently cover crust with a ring of foil to prevent edges from burning.
  8. Once finished, allow pie to cool to room temperature. Just before serving, sprinkle sugar evenly over top. Use a kitchen torch to gently brûlée top of pie. Allow it to harden before cutting and serving.

Makes 1 9-inch pie.

cook’s note: Serve pie with bourbon whipped cream and toasted hazelnuts, if desired. To make bourbon whipped cream, beat 1 cup heavy whipping cream with 1/2 cup sugar and 3 tablespoons bourbon. Garnish with a few toasted, chopped hazelnuts.