Savoury Pumpkin & Fig Pie

Pumpkin pie does not always have to be sweet, a savoury version is beautifully salty, a bit tangy with a hint of sweetness from the pumpkin and figs. Now that autumn is in full bloom, there is nothing more enjoyable than pumpkin pie with a hot cup tea overlooking the kaleidoscope of fall colours. All the leaves have turned a vibrant yellow in Finland and slowly they will begin to drop as we get closer to colder more darker days. This morning the temperature was zero degrees, so it seems that winter is near us.

To make the crust, I use the same staple recipe that I mostly use, that requires butter, flour and a bit of water. It really is so easy to make and after this, you will not buy store bought dough anymore. For the pumpkin filling, I roast some pumpkin in the oven and mix it in with a little bit of garlic, onion and feta cheese. Eggs give the filling some solidity and it is topped with luscious figs. Figs are my favourite during this time of year all the way until winter, as I think they give that decedent festive feeling to nearly anything.

Pie crust ingredients 

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 6 Tbsp cold unsalted butter cut in cubes
  • About 4 Tbsp cold water
  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter melted (for brushing)

To make the butter crust, add the flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine. This can also be done without a food processor, by hand. Add the cold cubed butter and pulse about 20-30 times, until the butter is incorporated and the mixture is crumbly. Drizzling in the cold water while pulsing again until a dough is formed. If the mixture looks too dry, add a little more water. Turn out onto a floured surface and form it into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour. This process can be done a day in advance as well.

Roll out the dough on a floured surface as thin as possible and place over the buttered cake tin. Press on all surfaces until even.

Pumpkin Filling

  • Pumpkin Slices (small pumpkin)
  • Pinch of salt/pepper/ thyme twigs
  • 1 red onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • Crumbed feta cheese ( about 1 dl)
  • ground nutmeg
  • 1-2 tablespoon butter
  • 2 eggs
  • pinch of honey

Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Slice the pumpkin (do not need to remove the crust) and place onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Drizzle some oil on top along with a pinch of salt. Place into the oven for about 45min or until the flesh is cooked.

Once the pumpkin is cooked. Take out the flesh (remove the skin and sides) and place in a bowl. Then, heat a sauce pan with a bit of butter and add in the chopped onion and garlic. Stir gently so them soften (not burn) and add in a few twigs of thyme. Then mix in the pumpkin flesh, along with some ground nutmeg. Let it gently simmer on low heat and add in the crumbled rich feta. Check for flavour in case it needs more salt or pepper. After a few minutes, remove from the heat and place the filling into a bowl to let it cool a bit. Once a little cool, mix in the eggs. Pour the filling on top on the crust in the cake tin. Slice some fresh figs and add them on top. Meanwhile, in a little pot over medium heat, melt a little butter that will be brushed on top of the figs. Allow the butter to brown on the stove and add in a pinch of honey. Remove from heat and brush over the figs and the sides of the crust.

Place into an oven of 180C for about 40 minutes until the sides begin to golden.

Savory Fig Pie

 

‘Savory fig pie & Frosty January Days’

Sunday, we had our pajamas on longer than usual that was followed by a little bit of baking. I love lounging around the house in crispy white linen pj’s and frothy cappuccino in the other hand, it definitely falls for one of my weaknesses. I decided to make a savory fig pie for breakfast as we had lots of them in the fridge. You begin by making of the butter pie crust, as it sits in the fridge for a good hour so it’s a good excuse to through yourself back into bed for a while longer. This pie crust is a great easy recipe to remember as it works well with so many other pies, sweet or savory. For the sweet version, you just add a teaspoon of sugar into the dough recipe. For the filling, I wanted something easy and classic to accompany the delicious sweet figs. It builds up of feta, cream cheese and cream, no eggs are needed for this filling. The filling is luscious and soft that sets once the pie cools down.

We had a little bit of sunlight today, as the temperature dropped from zero to -20 degrees Celsius overnight. As a morning walk with Siena, I decided to snap a few images with my camera of the magical process when the sea freezes. It looks just whimsical, when the sun rises and the water is steaming that minute by minute gets coated with ice.

Butter crust

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 6 Tbsp cold unsalted butter cut in cubes
  • About 4 Tbsp cold water
  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter melted (for brushing)
  • For a sweet version, add 1 tsp sugar

Butter crust Directions

To make the butter crust, add the flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine. Add the cold cubed butter and pulse about 20-30 times, until the butter is incorporated and the mixture is crumbly. Drizzling in the cold water while pulsing again until a dough is formed. If the mixture looks too dry, add a little more water. Turn out onto a floured surface and form it into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour. This process can be done a day in advance as well.

Feta Whip Filling

  • 1 block of feta
  • ½ packet of cream cheese
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • Salt/pepper
  • 2-3 tablespoons of all-purpose flour

Topping

  • Sliced fresh figs
  • Honey
  • Serve with chopped pistachio & dried oregano on top

In a food processor, blend together the feta and cream cheese. Then add the cream, salt and pepper. Place into a bowl and mix in a few tablespoons of flour to add a bit of thickness to the filling.

Make the pie:

Take the dough out of the fridge and layout on a flour surface. Roll out the dough to the shape of your pie tin (I used smaller rectangular ones). Butter the pie tin and place the dough on top. Then, scoop some of the feta filling on top and garnish with slices of figs. Lastly, brush some honey over the figs and add a sprinkling of salt. Brush the pie eggs with melted butter.

Place into a preheated oven of 180 Celsius degrees for about 30minutes until the pie was become golden in color. Once the pie comes out, don’t be alarmed if it looks too soggy, it will stiffen up once it cools down. Serve with chopped pistachios and sprinkle some dried oregano on top.