Pumpkin & Semolina Pie
Oh, of course it is another silly name for a post, but I couldn't resist after rolling those strips of pastry around and around like a snake to form the top of my little pie! I feel a little sneaky as well as far as how I made it- but that doesn't make me a snake in the grass! Just happy to cut corners- and eager to enjoy 3 of my favorite things all at the same time...
I love semolina pudding, love pumpkin and love, love, love puff pastry! I especially love the convenience nowadays of being able to buy excellent puff pastry ready made and ready to go- it is so versatile! This little treat here was put together in just 15 minutes, baked for just 15 minutes and was cool enough to eat just 15 minutes later!
So- let's get started! Or let me tell you where I started in any case! The first thing I did was to sautée the finely grated Hokkaido pumpkin in just a hint of butter- about 2 handfuls of pumpkin was all it took for this saucer-sized pie. I let it cook for 1-2 minutes and then deglazed the saucepan with a splash of Cointreau. Once that had soaked into the pumpkin, I added cinnamon, vanilla essence, a hint of nutmeg, a hint of grated orange zest and a little milk- just enough to fetch up and blend together all of the flavors in the saucepan.
I added a little more milk and 3 tablespoons of semolina powder. I stirred this in well and added more milk, little by little, constantly stirring, until everything was nicely blended together and creamy. Of course I sweetened my pumpkin using Stevia- but also, of course you can use sugar to sweeten yours- it is all a matter of taste! I reduced the heat to a gentle simmer and carried on stirring. After 10 minutes of cooking, I turned off the heat and allowed it to sit for 5 minutes more... in which time cooled off a little and thickened up quite a bit!
I laid out the pastry so that it overlapped my baking dish and spooned the pumpkin/semolina mix into the centre evenly. I then folded the excess pastry over on itself and pleated it all the way around, so that it held the pumpkin filling nicely in place. I cut the remaining pastry into thin strips, which I began to lay in a circle from the outside in- always slightly overlapping so that the top of the pie was sealed. Then off the the oven I went!
I baked it at 300°F for 15 minutes, after which time the pastry had puffed-up nicely and it had become a lovely golden brown... and smelt just fantastic! With no cream, excess fat or
even sugar in my case, this made for a yummy and satisfying dessert! The buttery pastry was decadent enough for me to make this simple idea into a delicious treat- and the spicy and unctuous pumpkin filling with vanilla, cinnamon and orange made it simply divine. Give it a go... you'll see!