Greet fall with a pumpkin pie


This year, cooler weather came along just in time to give us a taste of fall for Labor Day weekend. I guess that’s better than 90 degrees stretching into September and October. Shorter and cooler days — and especially nights — go with the time of year. The crickets have been grumbling about the end of summer for a couple of weeks now, and they always seem to know best.

The comics in the daily newspapers have had funny story lines on the start of school for a week and a half — a sure sign of fall right around the corner.

I like September. The summer flowers are still beautiful, tomatoes are hanging heavy on the plants (although cool nights will make short work of that) and pumpkins are ripe and ready for pies. What’s not to like?

The annual Circleville Pumpkin Show held from Oct. 18-21 this year is a highlight of fall. Since 1903, when it was a one-day event, the pumpkin show has attracted folks from central Ohio and beyond to “Round Town” to experience everything pumpkin. From rides to the competition of the giants (the contest to identify the largest pumpkin of the year by weight — in 2016 it weighed 1,553.5 pounds) to examples of every food you can think of that can possibly contain pumpkin, you won’t be able to avoid the prolific gourds. You can also see and sample the world’s biggest pumpkin pie.

The best-known pumpkin recipe by far has to be the one for pumpkin pie featured on the label that adorns the cans of Libby’s Pumpkin. It just goes hand-in-hand with fall and the upcoming holidays. Here’s another pumpkin pie recipe that’s a little different but just as scrumptious. It’s an oldie, but definitely a keeper, and sure to become a tradition. Happy eating and enjoy the Circleville Pumpkin Show.

PUMPKIN CHIFFON PIE

Baked 9 inch pie shell

1 tablespoon gelatin

1/4 cup cold water

3 egg yolks

1/2 cup sugar

1 1/4 cups canned or cooked pumpkin (not pie filling)

1/2 cup milk

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

3 egg whites

1/2 cup sugar

Whipped cream

Prepare the pie shell.

Soak gelatin in 2 tablespoons cold water. Set aside.

Beat egg yolks, add sugar, pumpkin, milk, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Cook and stir these ingredients in a double boiler over medium heat until thick. Stir in the soaked gelatin until dissolved. Chill. Whip 3 egg whites until stiff but not dry.

When mixture begins to set, stir in sugar and fold in the egg whites.

Fill the pie shell. Chill to set. Serve garnished with whipped cream.

Makes one 9-inch pie

If you go to the Circleville Pumpkin Show: You will run into the biggest pumpkin show on earth at the intersection of State Route 56 and 23. If you drive, plan to be patient finding a place to park it’ll be worth it.

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Linda Conway Eriksson

Contributing Columnist

Linda Conway Eriksson can be reached at lindaconwayeriksson@gmail.com.