Inspiration takes many forms.
In the case of fall baking, that inspiration usually comes from three key ingredients: apple, cranberry or pumpkin.
All three of these have already made an appearance on Livelymess this fall. Along with one of these recipes, I made a declaration that I do not like autumn and will never be one of those people who swoons over scarves and crispy leaves. I am a summer person and summer alone.
Of course, I warm up to fall as it cools down for me. It’s really not so bad, even if it’s just a precursor to winter.
I’m just having so much fun making fall recipes. Unlike summer, there is no pressure to create something light and whimsical. Fall is about rich, stick-to-your-ribs stuff, with aromatic, deep flavours like cinnamon and cloves and ginger and nutmeg. I’m sure, by the time next May rolls around, I’ll be itching to use fresh berries and bright citrus again.
For now, I’m all about autumn.
Pumpkin is perhaps the most “fall” of all fall ingredients for a few reasons: 1.They’re in season, 2. Halloween, which is the pinnacle of fall, 3. It’s orange, like just about everything else September through mid-November (then everything green in Canada dies and curls up in a big, white snow blanket).
At Thanksgiving, I didn’t make pumpkin pie (still feeling a bit guilty about this). I had baked and frozen a wild blueberry pie while they were still in season and it was high-time to make some freezer space.
I made up for it this weekend with this delightful pumpkin custard.
Imagine the texture of pudding with the flavour of pumpkin pie. Sprinkle some crunchy pecans and crumbly ginger cookies on top and you’ve got this crispy, creamy, dreamy custard.
Can you tell I’m pretty smitten with it?
It was so easy to make, too. It’s as simple as keeping an eye on the stove and whisking away.
This custard has a companion – my Caramelized Ginger Oatmeal Cookies. The two went perfectly together.
I took three of the cookies and crumbled them together in a bowl and added a few chopped pecans. I wanted the cookie crumbs to add some crispness to the dish, so I toasted them along with the pecans on a cookie sheet for just a few minutes.
If you don’t have time to make your own cookies, don’t fret! Stop by your local store and crumble up some store bought ginger snaps. They’ll do the trick.
This recipe is the stuff fall dinner parties are made of. How cute would it be served in little, hollowed out pumpkins or a fancy martini glass? Of course, you can never go wrong with a mason jar!
Pumpkin custard with ginger cookie crumble
- 2 cups 2% milk
- 4 egg yolks
- 1/4 cup of white sugar
- 1/2 cup of pumpkin puree
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1 tbsp corn starch
- 3 crumbled Caramelized Ginger Oatmeal Cookies or 1/3 cup of crumbled ginger snaps
- 2 tbsp chopped pecans
- Whipped cream, for serving
- Pour milk into a large pot on the stove, turning the burner to medium heat, whisking occasionally. The milk will be ready when it starts to bubble around the edges. Turn the burner to low
- Meanwhile, whisk your egg yolks in a separate bowl until they are frothy and light yellow. Add sugar and whisk until sugar is no longer grainy. Pour one cup of the scalded milk into the bowl.
- Add pumpkin, pumpkin spice and vanilla to the bowl, whisking until there are no lumps. Pour the egg and pumpkin mixture back into the pot. Add corn starch.
- Continue whisking, ensuring the mixture does not overheat. This will cause your eggs to scramble. The mixture will thicken. Continue cooking for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and, working quickly, pour the custard into the serving cups of your choice. Let cool on the countertop for 30 minutes and then place in the fridge until set or ready to eat. This should take about two hours.
- Meanwhile, crumble your cookies or ginger snaps in a small bowl with chopped pecans. Spread on a cookie sheet and broil in the oven on the lowest setting for five to seven minutes. Set aside until ready to serve.
- Sprinkle your crumble on top of the custard and serve with whipped cream.