Luscious and creamy, traditional but new. My greatest dessert recipe from this year is pumpkin custard. It tastes like a rich pumpkin pie filling, but not too sweet. This can be made with either fresh pumpkin or canned. It works beautifully either way. The recipe came out of my desire for custard using pantry ingredients. The directions are as simple as dump it all together, but the individual ramekins make a lovely, elegant presentation. Serves 6-8.
1 can evaporated milk (skim or whole, be sure to shake can before opening)
1/2 c brown sugar
1/4 c pure maple syrup
2 c pumpkin puree
1 T orange zest
1 t pumpkin pie spice
1/2 t cinnamon
1/2 t fresh nutmeg
pinch of sea salt
whipped cream made with sugar and vanilla for garnish
1. Preheat oven to 325°. Boil a pot of water for a bain marie. Butter 6-8 ramekins and place the ramekins inside an oblong pan.
2. Whisk all ingredients (except the whipped cream) together until smooth. Ladle each ramekin with custard, wiping off any smears or drips along the edges. Carefully pour boiling water into the oblong pan until it comes halfway up the ramekins. Bake for 1 hour.
3. Remove ramekins from the oblong pan and allow them to cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Put them in the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours.
4. Because the custard is not overly sweet, prepare your whipped cream with a few tablespoons of sugar and a teaspoon of vanilla. It really balances the flavors. Dollop fresh whipped cream onto chilled custard and sprinkle with cinnamon or crushed gingersnap cookies. Enjoy!