We used to get sick every year around Christmas time.
It’s true there are a lot of colds going around this time of year, as well as a lot of people getting together having parties and such, but there are colds going around for a lot of the year and usually we don’t get sick. It could be all the Vitamin C that we take every time cold season rolls around (though really sometimes I think the Vitamin C actually makes me sick…it tastes awful). I think mainly we don’t get sick because our ranch-raised immune systems can fight it off. My sisters and I grew up around dogs, horses, and lots and lots of dirt (some of which we undoubtedly ate).
But for some reason we’d get sick every Christmas without fail. It finally hit us when we started cutting back on sugar: Sugar completely compromises your immune system. The sugar overload at Christmas probably resulted in total shutdown.
So anyway, over the years we’ve slowly cut back on the Christmas sugar dosage, and so we’ve gotten successively less and less sick each year. I’m going for “completely healthy” this year. Hopefully this junk-free pumpkin pie will help me along a bit (and just you know, I think the it tastes even better than regular pumpkin pie).
Click here for my favorite no fail GF pie crust recipe!
- 1 pie crust, rolled out into pie plate (don’t precook). You can use a regular-sized pie pan or an extra large one.
- 1½ cups well-cooked butternut squash or pumpkin (use 2 cups for big pie)
- 1¼ cup cream (use 1½ cups for big pie)
- 1 /3 cup melted honey, slightly cooled (use ½ cup for big pie)
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup (use 3 for big pie)
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon cloves
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 3 eggs (use 4 for big pie)
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Note: It’s best to have a blender for this recipe so that you can blend the squash very well, but if you don’t have a blender, using a mixer and a hand masher works pretty well.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Mash the squash well. If you don’t have a blender, mash very well with a fork or a potato masher.
- Put the squash in the blender (don’t turn the blender on yet).
- Add the cream, honey, and maple syrup to the squash. Blend on medium-high for about 30 seconds, until mixture is smooth and squash is fully pureed. If you’re using just a mixer, mix on high until mixture is smooth, then mash more with potato masher. Repeat mixing and mashing until squash is smooth.
- Add the spices, the eggs, and the vanilla extract. Blend or beat until smooth.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared pie crust. Cover the edges of the crust gently with foil (foil doesn’t have to be wrapped around crust, it just has to be over it). Don’t cover the filling with foil or else condensation will ruin the surface.
- Put the pie into the preheated oven. Bake at 350 for 1 or 1½ hours, until the filling feels pretty firm to touch and doesn’t wiggle when you touch it. As you bake, check the top of the crust now and then for brownness. If after about 1 hour it is still a very light brown, remove the foil and allow it to brown well. Keep an eye on it and cover again if necessary.
- When the pie is cooked, carefully remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 1 hour before putting it in the refrigerator to cool for at least 3 more hours before eating. It’s best refrigerated overnight but can be eaten on the same day.
- Top with whipped cream and enjoy.