Thanksgiving Leftovers: Pumpkin Pie

My dear friend Debbie...

...and I met when we were 14 in a summer school class.  She became a Home Economics teacher, Master Chef and Caterer.  Now known as Cater Deb, she recently asked me to teach with her last Wednesday for a charity event…the Solar Cooker Project 

The assignment was ‘use something leftover from Thanksgiving and turn it into a dish.’

…Look!!  Boy was this fun…

Thanksgiving Leftovers Pumpkin Pie ~

I always make cranberry relish for Thanksgiving and there is always a lot left over…because mom and I are the only real fans…

Thanksgiving Relish ~

  • 1 bag cranberries
  • 1 apple
  • 1 orange
  • 1/2 c sugar

1. Wash all fruit.  Remove seeds from apple and orange.  Do not peel apple.

2. Peel half of the orange and leave peel attached to the other half.
3. Put the apple and orange in food processor with the sugar.  Pulse until it looks minced.
4. Add the cranberries.  Pulse until it has the consistency you like.  I like it to look like relish.  Yum.

-- This recipe makes enough for two tarts.


1. Put the Thanksgiving Relish in a bowl and add 2T Quick Cooking Tapioca.  Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
2. Put in a pot.  Bring to boil and then turn to low.  Cover and cook over low heat until it is shiny and thick, about 20 minutes.  If it is very fresh and dry, add 1 – 2 T water.  If it is very soupy, no need to add water.
3. Remove from heat and add walnuts or pecans if you want a Pumpkin Nut Pie, and omit the nuts if you want it sans nuts.

While the Relish is cooking, make the crust:


  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 2 T sugar
  • 10 T cold butter
  • 1 egg

1.  Put the flour, salt and sugar into food processor bowl and pulse together.  

2.  Cut the butter into small squares and add to flour mixture.  Pulse a few times until it has the consistency of peas.
3.  Add the egg.  Run the processor until the dough sticks together and looks like a ball. This happens fast. 

4.  Wrap and refrigerate or freeze until it is firm enough to handle.

This recipe makes enough for one tart, so double the recipe for two tarts.

Pie Filling ~

We carved so many pumpkins for Halloween and used so many to decorate for Thanksgiving. Somewhere along the way I couldn’t throw away another pumpkin. I boiled it in water. It looked good and smelled good. I took off the rind. Easy enough after it boiled. I pureed it. Wow…how light and fragrant. You can peel it with a vegetable peeler before you boil it-that way you don’t have to wait until it cools to handle it. Or not…and scoop it later.  Or you can bake it in the oven. 350 for one hour.  Scoop and puree.

Pie filling (This is almost like Libby’s Famous Pumpkin Pie recipe-foolproof)

  • 3/4 c sugar (if using homemade pumpkin you will only need 1/2 c.)
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 t ground cinnamon
  • 1 t ground ginger
  • ¼ t ground cloves
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 can (15 oz) Libby’s pumpkin (or 2 c. of your homemade pumpkin)
  • 1 can Carnation Evaporated Milk – lowfat or regular works equally well

1. Mix the sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves in small bowl. If you don’t do this, the spices will clump up and not distribute well.

2.  Beat eggs in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar spice mixture.
3.  Stir in evaporated milk.
4.  Pour into pie shells. (yes, I said shells…this filling makes two tarts!)

Bake in preheated 425 oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350 and bake for 20 minutes more until toothpick  inserted into center comes out clean. Spread the cranberry mixture on top of the warm pie.  Let cool together.  Toast nuts of your choice lightly and add them to the top if desired.

Serve warm or chilled with Chantilly style homemade whipped cream.

Homemade Whipped Cream ~

  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 2 t vanilla
  • 1 T sugar (or to taste)

1.  Add all ingredients together in the bowl of an electric mixer.

2.  Place towel over the top to prevent splatters.
3.  Mix gently for one minute then whip on high for two minutes.
4.  Remove towel and continue whipping until stiff peaks form.

Spoon into serving bowl and refrigerate until serving time.