Double Ginger Pumpkin Tart

Double Ginger Pumpkin Tart

One 9-inch pastry shell, pre-baked (recipe follows)

  • 6 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup very firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup solid-pack pumpkin purée (not seasoned pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped crystallized ginger; more for garnish
  • whipped cream for garnish (recipes follows)

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 325°F. In a food processor fitted with the metal blade, process the cream cheese and brown sugar until smooth and lump-free, about 20 seconds. Add the pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger, and salt and process until well blended, about 20 to 30 seconds more. Add the egg yolk, egg, and vanilla and pulse process until just incorporated. Sprinkle the chopped crystallized ginger over the batter and pulse twice just to combine.  Use a spatula to scrape the filling into the crust and spread it evenly. Bake the tart until the filling just barely jiggles when the tart pan is nudged, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer the tart to a rack and let cool completely. Refrigerate the tart in the pan until chilled and firm, about 3 hours. Garnish with whipped cream and crystallized ginger, if you like.

Brandied Whipped Cream:

  • 1 ½ cups heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons brandy

In mixing bowl, combine cream, sugar, ginger and salt. Let stand 15 minutes. Add brandy; beat to soft peaks.

Pate Brisee Master Recipe (pie pastry)

  • 11⁄3 cup flour
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
  • 10 tablespoons butter, CHILLED, cut in small cubes
  • 4 to 5 tablespoons ice water

Sift flour and salt. Add butter cubes to flour, cut in until pieces are about half the size of a pea. By hand, add 3 tablespoons ice water; bring mixture together with scraper. Add more water very slowly as necessary, taking care not to add too much. The dough should not be sticky or too soft to handle. Divide dough into two equal portions; shape into two balls, flatten into disks. If the dough is reasonably cool, you may work it immediately, or wrap and chill at 15 minutes. If you are preparing only one tart, freeze remaining pastry up to 2 months for another use.

On a lightly floured surface flatten and roll pastry, each time ROLL, SLIDE and TURN. Add flour as necessary. Check thickness; roll to 1⁄8 inch. Roll pastry around rolling pin; transfer to tart pan. Cut off bit of excess, roll in flour, and use as a “pusher” to press edges to side of pan. Trim top with rolling pin. Go around top edge of pastry with thumb pushing up “thumbing up.” Chill on tray in the freezer 30 minutes. Prick bottom and sides of pastry shell with fork. Blind bake, as below, or fill and top. Bake at 375°F until pie is done.

**To blind bake:  Preheat oven to 375°F. Line pastry shell with baking cartouche. Fill with pie weights, pressing out to edge of pastry. Bake until edges are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Remove pie weights and cartouche. Return to oven; continue baking 3 to 4 minutes longer. Pastry is done when bottom is dry. Cool on rack.

Yield: pastry for TWO 9” tarts.