Is there a way to make pumpkin pie that has a nice, crisp bottom crust? I don’t mean “not soggy,” I mean crisp. I’ve tried everything—starting in a superhot oven, prechilling the crust before adding filling, even brushing the crust with egg white and letting it dry. Nothing helps. So what’s the secret to crisp pumpkin pie crust?
Nothing will yield a crisp pumpkin pie crust, except baking the pie crust “blind” (without filling), putting in the filling, and then baking it again. I bake all our custard pies that way and get a pleasantly dry, crisp crust; but for absolutely maximal crispitude you can’t beat the last-minute assembly method. It can be tricky, but when it works, it’s spectacular.
Prepare a prebaked 10- inch pie shell and set it aside. Generously oil a 9-inch pie pan with bland vegetable oil. Pour in filling. Place pie pan in a roasting pan, add hot water to the outer pan to come halfway up the sides of the inner one. Bake as usual.
At serving time, make a lot of whipped cream. Run a knife around the filling and jiggle the pan a bit to be sure it’s loose. Acting bravely, tip one edge toward the far edge of the shell, then slide the pan out and away, letting the filling fall into the crust. Repair as necessary and cover your tracks with plenty of the whipped cream.
Try it out with our Blue Ribbon Pumpkin Pie Recipe!