Editor's note: There's no such thing as too much pie at Thanksgiving, so this week on Sweets is Pie Week—a different recipe every day.
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We've come to the final installment of Pie Week, and now I'm ready for a cocktail. This pumpkin bourbon pie can't be shaken, stirred, or served with a twist, but it's the perfect closer to a week of pie baking or Thanksgiving with the in-laws.
I've already professed my adoration for classic pumpkin pie, and served up an airy version that will appeal to the less gluttonous (than me). Both are delicious, but I've saved my favorite fall pie for last. Think classic pumpkin pie, injected with a hint of booze, covered with a crunchy layer of toasted pecans, and then topped with an ethereal whipped concoction of mascarpone, cream, maple, and yes, more bourbon.
For me, dessert perfection is when there's enough variety to keep things texturally interesting, with all the flavors working in complete harmony, each one improving the taste of the others. This pie hits all my criteria, from its buttery, flaky crust and luscious pumpkin custard, to the toasted crisp pecans, and, the pièce de résistance; a creamy-yet-light-topping that melts on your tongue with a maple and bourbon finish.
In a week that I've spent making literally a dozen different pies, this is the one that now sits in my fridge because I couldn't bear to give it away like the others. Lacking the willpower to resist, I've been picking at it, shaving myself bites, sliver by glorious sliver. The topping long ago turned runny but I don't even care. It's so freaking good. Best of all, it's not for the kids table, which means more for you.
Cheers, and may your Thanksgiving be filled with fun and pie!
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About the author: Lauren Weisenthalhas logged many hours working in restaurant kitchens and bakeries of Brooklyn and Manhattan. She is a graduate of the Artisan Bread Baking and Pastry Arts programs at the French Culinary Institute. You can follow her on Twitter at @evillagekitchen.