I have been a bit homesick lately. I wish I could go back in time and slip on the velvet dress Gramma made. And go to Gramma’s house for Sunday or maybe Thanksgiving dinner with the whole family. Cousins would be over and we would begin our holiday season with Christmas songs around the piano. Erica might have played the violin. I might have played the violin as well in later years after practicing a bit. Lisa would play the piano.
The house was split into three levels. There was a dark wooden round railing on the staircase going upstairs that curved at the bottom of the stairs. It was smooth and shiny and I would always run my fingers along it going to the third level. I’m not sure if I remember correctly, but I believe there was the wall of frowning ancestors in the staircase going up. It has always been interesting to think of their lives and how they differed from ours. I found this photo in my album, and sure enough the frowning ancestors were in the place that I had remembered.
Upstairs the guest room had a bed that was so high you had to really try climbing on top of it. The mattress was rather firm and there might have been cotton crocheted lace along the edge of the spread that was turned over near the head of the bed. I remember sleeping on the bed a few times when staying overnight at Gramma’s. I felt like a princess on the bed, and I think my brother must have been sleeping on the other side of the big double bed. There was something so exciting about sleeping over at Gramma’s that sometimes it took a little while for the sandman to come. I remember watching the shadows of the tree branches swaying. Perhaps it was the street light or the light of the moon that filtered into the room. It felt cozy and safe, Gramma and Grampa were just down the hall and the next thing I knew, it was the light of the sun filtering in the window bringing the new day. Gramma and Grampa were both in the kitchen by the time we made it downstairs. I don’t remember if I woke Pekka up or did he wake me. We sat in the back of the kitchen, where the table had its own niche in the bay window. We had Rice Krispies that crackled and popped quietly in our bowls, while WCCO played softly in the background. Maybe we had a piece of toast as well or a half of a muffin from the bakery.
The recipes below are made to share. The pumpkin pie is gluten-free and made using no refined sugar. It is absolutely delicious and will be going on my list of favorites. My recipe for homemade pumpkin purée can be found here.
Gluten-free and refined sugar free pumpkin pie
The pie crust recipe has been created by Erika from A Little Insanity blog and you can find it from this link.
The flour I used was a mix of white and dark gluten-free flour that had ground flax seed in it giving it a darker color.
Pumpkin pie filling (Refined sugar free)
5 dl/ 2 c pumpkin purée
1 and 1/2 dl/ 2/3 c coconut sugar or unrefined cane sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
3/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp salt
2 dl/just under 1 c heavy cream
Follow the instructions for the pie crust as can be found in the link above. Roll out the pie crusts, place in pie tins and refrigerate for about 20-30 minutes. Prebake at 200 C/400 F for about 10-12 minutes or until the crust has gained slight color. Remove from the oven and allow to cool while preparing the filling.
Beat the eggs and coconut sugar until very thick. Mix the spices in with the pumpkin purée. Fold the pumpkin mixture into the egg batter. Using a spoon, add in the cream. Pour the filling into the pie tin and bake at 175 C/350 F for about 35-40 minutes. Test with a skewer.
Allow to cool and serve with whipped cream flavored gently with a bit of coconut sugar and cinnamon.
One weekend recently we had pumpkin for every meal. Pumpkin waffles, a DIY Pumpkin spice latte that was better thank Starbucks and Savory Pumpkin sauce over cooked barly. The kids did not complain and even our baby had some pumpkin purée.
I browsed a bit online and noticed that Martha Stewart had fried rosemary in olive oil. The rosemary gave my pumpkin sauce a beautiful flavor.
olive or coconut oil
Heat about 2 tablespoons of olive or coconut oil on a large frying pan. Place the fresh rosemary into the pan and fry for about 1-2 minutes or until the rosemary is turning a bit brown. These crispy bits will bring the flavor of your sauce to the next level.
Cook barley according to directions on the package. Season with organic vegetable stock.
5 dl/2 cups of pumpkin purée
1 clove of garlic
1 onion, finely chopped
half and half or cream cheese
salt and pepper
water or barley cooking water
Remove the rosemary and set aside on a plate. Place the minced garlic and onion into the already hot pan. Add in the the pumpkin purée and stir. Since the pumpkin purée is already cooked this sauce is very quick. Add water or barley cooking water to thin the sauce a bit. If you prefer, you may add a splash of half and half or 50 g of cream cheese to bring some creaminess to the sauce.
Add the vinegar, salt and pepper. Check flavor.
Spoon sauce over the cooked barley and garnish with the fried rosemary.
Lovely post Laila. My Grandma’s bed was high too, and with no heat in the bedrooms there were lots of homemade quilts piled high on it. You’be made me hungry for pumpkin pie now!
Hello Ardys, Your Grandma’s bed with the quilts piled high sounds almost like the bed in the Princess and Pea story. 🙂 I just love pumpkin pie and these past couple of days I have been making all sorts of excuses to have a piece. So I’ve had a slice after breakfast and lunch and a third in the evening after the kids are in bed…aaah. There is still one pie in the freezer and purée as well for holiday pies. And two more pumpkins to make purée from. Definitely make a pie if you just have a chance.
I remember that house too! Some dear memories from that place and especially the inhabitants…
Hope you are able to visit them soon!
❤ I hope so too! This past spring it did not work out, but perhaps in the near future. Glad we have the memories to carry with us.
It looks delicious, Laila! But I’m loving the old photos even more, how wonderful! x
Aren’t those old photos treasures…love them as well!
Memories of times past, we all miss those perfect moments with our families from when we were you. I enjoyed reading about yours.
Thank you Karen! I don’t know how I missed answering your comment! I will need to stop by your blog soon…work has taken up way too much time lately. Yearning for the blogging scene! 🙂
Childhood memories can be so vivid, evoking such strong yet warm emotions. I have many such memories and cherish them all. This pie would be a welcome addition to any holiday table and being GF, it can be served without worry. So few desserts fall into that category these days.
I cherish those memories as well…they carry us in life.
Looking at all the lovely smiles in your old photos, I can’t imagine there were ever any frowning ancestors in your family. You seem to come from a family tradition of love and smiles and good food. And I am sure there were plenty of smiles in your family when you produced your delicious pumpkin dishes.
Just noticed that I had not replied in timely manner! Sorry about that! How are you? Will need to pop by your blog soon! I believe the frowning ancestors had to pose for such a long time for the photo that smiles would have been hard to do back in the 1800s. 🙂 Most likely they were pleasant people.