I happen to love pumpkin pie more than most (for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert if you must know) but since I carefully avoid eating wheat these days and I'm not a fan of gluten-free pastry, this baked pumpkin custard hits the spot best for me. As a bonus, it's really simple to make too. The crunchy pecans are a good stand in for the texture I crave in a buttery crust.
BAKED PUMPKIN CUSTARD
2 cups fresh or canned pumpkin purée
9 egg yolks
2 cups organic heavy cream
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla powder or 2 tsp extract
1/4 tsp sea salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Whisk pumpkin purée, egg yolks, heavy cream with maple syrup, spices and salt in a metal bowl.
Bring about two inches of water to boil in a double boiler or saucepan. Set the bowl over the water and stir the custard continuously until it's thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
Pour the thickened custard into small porcelain dishes (ramekins) and set them on a baking sheet. Pour at least a half inch of water around the dishes and bake at 350°F for 30 minutes or so. Test by sticking a toothpick into the custard’s center - it should come out clean.
Serve slightly warm with sweetened whipped cream and candied pecans.
Toss 1 cup pecans with 1 tbsp melted butter, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp cocoa powder and 1 tsp brown sugar. Toast until fragrant (3-5 minutes) on a baking sheet in the oven and let cool.