Oriental Spiced Pumpkin Pie – a Centrepiece Dish not Only for Celebrations
Having a vegetarian at home sometimes makes cooking more challenging. And celebrations like Christmas is one of those times as you would like to prepare something special: appetising, good looking but also nutritious. This pie ticks all the boxes. It is packed with excellent ingredients and flavours, and the filo pastry allows you to create ruffle-like decorations to make the pie look beautiful.
Although it is a savoury dish, this Oriental Spiced Pumpkin Pie is rather on a sweet side thanks to the pumpkin and honey. However, the spicy harissa sauce balances the pie beautifully. So for sure you will not feel like you are having a dessert for the main meal!
Oriental Spiced Pumpkin Pie (vegetarian)
A stunning pumpkin pie with spinach, raisins, almonds, shallots and spicy but sweet flavor.
Preheat an oven to 200C (or 180C fan).
Over a medium heat dry fry the cumin and coriander seeds till they release aroma; grind them using a pestle and mortar, add paprika, cinnamon, 0.5 tsp salt and 4 tbsp olive oil and mix everything together.
Place the pumpkin cubes in a roasting tin, pour the spiced olive over it and mix well to coat all the pieces (best done with your hands).
Put in the oven and roast for 30 minutes or until the pumpkin is cooked through.
In the meantime heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat, add the shallots and fry them stirring for approx. 5 minutes till they start getting slightly brown.
Add the ginger, 100g pistachios and 100g almonds, fry for further 2 minutes.
Add the raisins (or cranberries), 2 tbsp honey and the spinach, fry stirring till the spinach is wilted, mix everything with the roasted pumpkin when it is ready.
Grease a 23cm diameter loose-bottomed baking tin.
The filo pastry sheets should be kept under a damp tea towel to prevent them from drying out. Each filo pastry sheet should be brushed on one side with olive oil before it is put to the baking tin. If sheets are big enough, put one in so it covers the bottom and two opposite sides of the tin with some overhang. Then turn the tin 90 degrees and put the second sheet the same way (now the bottom is covered by 2 layers and side by 1 layer, with some overlaps). Repeat the steps with 2 more sheets of filo pastry. If the sheets are smaller, then place one in the tin so it covers the bottom (or at least two-thirds of it) and 1 side with some pastry overhanging and then put the second one the same way but to cover the opposite side of the tin. Turn the tin 90 degrees and put two other sheets the same way. Repeat the steps so there are at least 2 layers of filo pastry everywhere.
Put the pumpkin mixture to the tin, spread it and cover with the overhanging filo pastry creating a desirable pattern. In case the filo wouldn't cover the top of the pie completely, at first use another sheet and only then decorate with the rest of the pastry. The pie can be prepared up to this stage and kept in a fridge covered with cling film a day in advance.
Put to the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes.
Just before the pie is ready, toast the rest of almond and pistachios until golden, mix with 1 tbsp of honey and pour over the pie.
Serve it with a sauce prepared by mixing all the ingredients together.