Give thanks for Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a national holiday celebrated across the pond with our cousins in America and Canada, where people give thanks for what they have. It is a family orientated holiday, sometimes celebrated more than the Christmas period where people take the time to consider their blessings.

Traditionally in America, Thanksgiving is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November and on the second Monday of October in Canada. The holiday was created with the beliefs of the both the Pilgrims and Puritans. The Pilgrims celebrated their seasonal harvest and would give thanks for the products that they had grown to feed their family and the Puritans would celebrate a religious event that combines prayer and feasting.

As most celebrations include a meal or feast of some sort, it’s no surprise to see a wide range of food offered on the thanksgiving dining table. Primarily, the menu would include turkey, stuffings, recipes using sweet potatoes and yams and of course, the classic pumpkin pie.

Although here in the UK we don’t celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday, I still feel that we should take time to consider what we all have to be thankful for, no matter how small. In recognition of the upcoming American thanksgiving on November 22nd, here is my version of one of the most traditional American thanksgiving puddings – Pumpkin Pie.

Pumpkin Pie

 1 egg, lightly beaten
 1 tbsp plain flour
 150g caster sugar
 1/2 tsp salt
 375g pumpkin puree
 350ml evaporated milk
 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon, ground ginger and ground nutmeg
 2 tbsp golden syrup
 1 sheet shortcrust pastry

1. Preheat oven to 230 C / Gas 8.
2. Line a 23cm round quiche/pie tin, trimming off the edges to make a neat fit. Set aside.
3. Add the sugar gradually to the pumpkin puree. Beat well and stir in the flour, salt and spices.
4. Stir in the golden syrup and beat well. Stir in the egg, then slowly add the evaporated milk, mixing until well blended.
5. Pour the batter into the unbaked pastry case.
6. Bake at 230 C / Gas 8 for 10 minutes then reduce the oven temperature to 170 C / Gas 3 and continue baking pie for an additional 30 minutes or until a knife inserted into the mixture comes out clean.

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