To be honest, there’s no contest for me when it comes to Thanksgiving dessert. I go for the apple pie–always.
For me, pumpkin pie is a little too much like eating winter squash. Especially when served warm. I faithfully make a pumpkin pie for all the other people I love who can’t have Thanksgiving without it.
But this year, I made a pumpkin pie even I can love–in the form of a tart.
Why in the world did this make a bit of difference?
Well, it comes down to two things: a filling that’s creamier in texture and thinner baked into a sweet tart crust.
Because I do love pumpkin cheesecake, I whisked whipped cream cheese to this filling, along with heavy cream and a shot of bourbon.
This is not your standard pumpkin pie, but the flavors play up all the reasons we love pumpkin pie spice in just about everything.
The sweet tart crust holds its shape nicely and is more crumbly and cookie like than classic pie crust.
The combination of this crust and the enriched filling creates a pumpkin tart that I not only want to eat for dessert but also for breakfast with a cup of coffee.
And again later in the afternoon as a snack.
What’s your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Let me know in the comments below or tag a photo #lynnesforage on Instagram or Facebook.
Creamy Pumpkin Tart with Chai Whipped Cream
Here is my take on pumpkin pie in the form of a rich and creamy pumpkin tart. This pumpkin tart filling is adapted from The Fannie Farmer Cookbook, enriched with whipped cream cheese. It is baked into a tart dough crust, but you can also use it in place of any pumpkin pie filling in a standard 9-inch blind-baked pie crust. I like this tart slightly chilled. The chai whipped cream topping is simple and celebratory; be sure to prepare it in advance.
- 1 3/4 cups (7.75 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, diced and softened
- 1 medium egg pastured
- 2 1/2 tablespoons cold water
Chai whipped cream:
- 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 2 chai tea bags
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar, plus additional to taste
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 10-inch tart dough, rolled out and chilled or pie crust
- 2 cups pumpkin puree
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs pastured
- 1 cup whipped cream cheese
- 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 2 tablespoons bourbon optional
Combine the flour, sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor with the dough blade inserted. Combine the egg and water and add it to the flour mixture. Pulse until a dough comes together roughly, about 12 pulses.
Dump the mass of dough onto the counter top. Use a dough knife to collect the dough into a mound, then use your palm to press the dough away from you. Fold it over and repeat 3 to 4 more times until it comes together.
Shape the dough gently into a disk, wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until ready to use. Or, you can freeze this dough for up to 1 month.
Roll out the dough on a lightly floured counter top into a circle 1/8 inch thick. Transfer the dough into the tart pan, fitting it into the bottom and pressing it gently into the sides. Trim the excess dough and neaten the edge with your fingers. Chill for at least 20 minutes.
Bring the cream to a boil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the tea bags and cinnamon stick, cover and remove from the heat. Steep the cream for 15 minutes, then discard the tea bags and cinnamon stick. Chill well, about 2 hours or overnight.
Whip the cream in a stand mixer or by hand until it thickens, then add the powdered sugar and vanilla. Continue whipping until soft peaks form. Taste for sweetness and chill until ready to serve with the pie.
Tart filling & baking:
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees with the rack in top third of the oven. Prick the prepared, chilled tart dough with a fork, line it with a piece of aluminum foil and weight it with dry beans or pie weights. Bake for 8 minutes, then remove the weights and foil. Continue baking until lightly browned, about 4 minutes more and transfer to a cooling rack.
Meanwhile, make the filling by whisking together the pumpkin, sugar and eggs until well blended. Add the cream cheese, heavy cream, cinnamon, ginger, salt, nutmeg and cloves and beat well. Stir in the bourbon, if using.
Pour the filling into the tart crust and bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to 300 degrees F. Bake until the filling is set all the way to the center and a knife comes out clean, about 40 minutes more. Transfer to the cooling rack, lift off the outer ring and cool completely before serving with the whipped cream.