Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Savory Bacon Crusted Pumpkin Pie

My friend Nikos can't understand why I stopped drinking beer. Sometimes I can't understand it either. As a child, I would take sips of my father's beer from time to time. I liked the head (snicker). My father never drank crap beer so into my teen years, my palette was already too refined for the standard mass produced crap beers which were SOP at keg parties. I didn't drink much until I was 18 and could go to bars. Er, I mean 21, of course. Living in NYC, my go to was Brooklyn Lager. What awesome flavor. When I met Brooklyn Brewery's Brew Master, Garrett Oliver, at the Great American Beer Festival back in 08, it was like I just met a rock star. Seriously I was star struck. It takes alot to do that to me. I've never gotten weak kneed from meeting a celebrity before, not even Dr. Ruth. (ok, maybe a little. Never mind, Liz did have to help me walk a few steps after our Dr. Ruth encounter.) I quit my career in archaeology to work as a cellarer in a microbrewery, that is how important beer was to me. I would plan vacations around breweries and beer fests. When I was on the road, I would go out of the way to find a local brew pub. Beer was my passion, my love; it was in my blood.

And I gave it up for my health. Perhaps it was foreshadowing when I was working at Dogfish Head Alehouse in Falls Church and there was a guest in the restaurant who was celebrating with friends. He didn't want a appetizer plate. He didn't eat anything the whole time he was there. He had a few glasses of red wine y nada mas. He had Celiac Disease. (he couldn't eat the food because everything on the menu was marinated or battered in it beer.) I had heard of it, I even suspected I had it when did my brief stint as a vegetarian and realized that despite the cool freakin' name, Seitan did not agree with me. The guy told me he used to be really into micro brews and was a real beer connoisseur. It made me sad. I actually thought that I would rather die of some horrible disease than give up beer.

But back to Nikos and his bewilderment over my grain-free diet. He asked me what I was going to do over the holidays (work, of course.) But seriously, turkey and vegetables are all I need. Plus, the drumstick doesn't touch the stuffing and it's the best part of the bird! The moment of inspiration came when Nikos asked about pumpkin pie. I said you can eat the filling with out the crust. He said, "are you going to put a sardine on top?" It was at that moment that I realized that bacon, being pliable and having a propensity to crisp when cooked would make a perfect pie crust. He said he would try it. If it weren't for the 2 glasses of wine I just had, I would bring a slice to him at work. Wouldn't I be everyone's best friend ever if I showed up on my night off with bacon-crusted pumpkin awesomeness. That would be better than the oatmeal cookies I used to bake.

1 12 oz pack of bacon
2 cups fresh pumpkin puree or 1 can
3 eggs
1/4 cup walnut butter (or any nut butter or cheese if you choose to eat it, or leave it out completely, whatever)
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar (optional)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp anise seed

If you're using fresh pumpkin, you want to drain off as much excess liquid as possible. I measure the 2 cups into a colander and then drained the liquid, so it was less than 2 cups drained.

Line pie plate with bacon. Bake at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and drain off excess bacon grease. You can dump this is you live in fear of saturated animal fat, or you can save it to season your cast iron.

In a mixing bowl, beat eggs. Add all the other ingredients. beat together then put in pie crust. Place extra slabs of bacon in a lattice on top of pumpkin. Bake at 400 for approximately 45 minutes, then broil for 5-10 or until bacon on top is crispy. let cool, drain extra bacon grease and enjoy.

This was the longest blog I will ever write. I blame the wine.


  1. That sounds yummy. I hope my mom will make it for me for Thanksgiving.

  2. This...looks..AMAZING. You, madam, are a culinary genius!

    (Found you thru Foodee)

  3. Who needs crust and whipped cream when you have bacon?? This is incredibly brilliant.