I grew up in Hong Kong and did not grow up celebrating thanksgiving but I have come to appreciate the holiday, the flavors and the pure feeling of tenderness of spending time with family during this time.
This autumnal pie is loosely inspired by the turkey curry that I would eat at my childhood best friend's house. The day after Christmas her mum would take the leftover turkey and turn it into something brand new for us to each while watching rugby on tv.
After a big holiday meal that is meat and starch forward, I always want to reach for something that is heavily spiced and textural. Something to reawaken the palette but using ingredients that I might have around my pantry since let’s be honest I ate so heavy the days before that i’m gonna wanna stay home in soft clothes. Using the HeyDay Canning Co. coconut curry chickpeas as the base for the filling makes this come together in a flash! The razzle dazzle of a mandolin delicata squash will make it seem like you spent all day cooking this bad boi but really it is an ode to our semi homemade queen Sandra Lee! A little bit of freshness is brought in with the gremolata with a thanksgiving twist, the addition of everyone’s fave thanksgiving topping, French’s onions!
You’ll have one extra thing to be thankful for this season and that’s this
Make the Crust!
Stir the flour, salt and sugar together in a large bowl with a flat bottom. Add the butter pieces on top of the dry ingredients. Using your fingers, toss the butter in the dry mixture so each cube is coated. Use a pastry blender or your fingers to cut or rub the butter into the mixture until it is in pieces a bit larger than peas (a few larger pieces are okay; be careful not to over-blend).
In a separate large measuring cup or small bowl, combine the water, cider vinegar, and ice. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the ice water mixture over the flour mixture; do not add the ice. Using your hands in a circular motion, bring the mixture together until all the liquid is incorporated. Continue adding the ice water mixture, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time. Carefully mix until the dough comes together in a ball, with some dry bits remaining. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently until it comes into one mass; you don’t want to overwork it.
Shape the dough into a flat disc, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight before using.
Prepare the Crust!
Take your 10 inch pie plate and grease it with butter or non-stick cooking spray. Take your dough out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature for about 5 minutes. Flour the surface you will be working on and start to roll out the dough applying even pressure across the dough. Pick up the dough and rotate, turn and roll. Continue rolling until the dough is 2 inches wider than the pie plate you are using. Once your dough is the desired size, fold your dough round in half, position the fold in the center of the pie pan and unfold the disc gently. Gently slide the dough into the pan, going around the edges and pressing the dough so it is flush against the base and sides. Once your dough is nice and snug, trim the excess dough around the edges making sure to leave a 1 ½ inch allowance. Roll the excess dough edge tightly under itself, making a rope that sits directly on top of the pan’s rim. You want to make the rope right so it doesn’t unravel while baking. After making the rope, go back around the pan and push the rope down with your thumb. Take your index finger and your thumb on one hand and make a “c” shape. Hold the “c” shape on the outside of your pie pan pushing inward while pushing your opposite thumb into the center of the “c” from inside the pie pan. This is your mold to crimp the edges all the way around. For an easier alternative, you can use a fork to press the dough around the edges. Put your crust in the freezer for 10 minutes or until it is frozen solid.
Partially Blind Bake the Crust!
You are going to partially blind bake the crust. Place a rimmed baking sheet on the lowest rack, and preheat the oven to 425°F Take your frozen crust and using a fork prick it all over the bottom and sides. Line the crust tightly with a piece or two of aluminum foil making sure the crimped edges are completely covered and there are no gaps. Pour pie weights or whatever alternative (beans, rice, sugar, marbles, etc.) you are using into the crust, filling it to the top. Place the pan on the preheated baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes, until the crimped edges are set but not browned. Remove from the oven and let cool for a couple minutes. While the crust cools, mix the 1 tablespoon of egg whites with 1 tablespoon of water. Lift out the foil and pie weights. Using a pastry brush to coat the entire crust with a thin layer of the egg white glaze to moisture-proof the crust. Return the crust to the oven and bake for an additional 5 minutes. Cool completely before filling. Set Aside till ready to assemble the pie
Make the Filling
In a medium saucepan on medium heat, melt your butter with a little oil to prevent burning. Add in sliced leeks and saute till slightly browned about 6-8 minutes. Remove pan from heat and add in both cans of coconut chickpeas. Stir to combine. Set aside till ready to assemble pie.
Assemble the Pie
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Take your partially blind baked crust and place on a parchment lined sheet pan. Fill crust with filling mixture and spread out so it is in an even layer. Top filling with rings of delicata squash in a spiral pattern. Overlapping each ring slightly. Once the spiral of squash covers the top of the pie completely drizzle olive oil on top and sprinkle it with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Bake in over for 60 minutes, rotation pie 180 degrees half way through cook time. Let cool for at least 30 minutes before slicing.
Make the topping.
In a small mixing bowl, combine all topping ingredients till well mixed.
TIME TO EAT!
Slice the pie and sprinkle it with the topping liberally! Best eaten in the softest clothes, under a blanket with Practical Magic playing in the background.