Gluten-Free Pumpkin Pie
Why This Recipe Works
Pumpkin pie filling is naturally gluten-free, so we weren’t worried about changing it, but when we used our favorite recipe to bake one in a gluten-free pie crust, we found that the loose, liquid-y filling turned our once-flaky crust gummy and raw-tasting. We needed to start with a thicker mixture that would not readily soak into the crust. Cooking the pumpkin mixture briefly on the stovetop drove off some of the moisture that had ruined the crust in the first round of testing. As an added bonus, this stint on the stovetop also helped to bloom the spices and intensify their warmth, resulting in the most flavorful pumpkin pie filling we had ever tasted. Next, we made sure that both shell and filling were hot when we assembled the pie, so the custard could begin to firm up almost immediately rather than soaking into the pastry. Finally, we baked the pie quickly, in the lower half of the oven, exposing the bottom of the crust to more intense heat and thus keeping it crisp and flaky. We avoided curdling by taking the pie out of the oven as soon as the center thickened to the point where it no longer sloshed but instead wiggled like gelatin when the pie plate was gently shaken.