More and more people say they are indulging into desserts throughout the day especially away from home and turning to non-traditional items for some sweet satisfaction. This is followed in my family when a simple glance to the dessert bar won’t stop you to try something that’s too fancy and attractive. Our dessert decisions are spontaneous often influenced by the crave driven consumption. We usually prefer traditional desserts. This was how I was led to create something unique and innovative.
Custard Pies were foreign and exotic at home. I was once making enough pies to reach my crust proficient goal, yes! the crust is the common factor for all pies. My favourite crust is the shortbread pie crust. It comes together so quickly using minimal ingredients from your kitchen cupboard that just needs to be prebaked for a few minutes.
I was all out to develop the classic Amish Custard Pie Recipe. The Amish community are often referred to as simple mainly known for their unadorned dresses, horse drawn vehicles and family centred lifestyle. A strong faith in God and church traditions determine their ways. Amish usually prepare most of their food from scratch, something that I have always loved following.
I was tweaking on so many Amish recipes but the Classic Custard Pie inspired me a lot. I was trying to mix and match so many flavours to work well for this pie. Here I flavoured the crust with Gulkhand or rose petal jam to make it aromatic. The crust turned out to be so fragrant and beautiful naturally. The filling of custard was again given a dose of the fragrant Kashmiri kesar or Saffron and to top it all with some crushed green pistachios. Adding all the major Indian Sweets’ components gulkand, kesar and pista into an Amish Custard Pie simply made me glad and this pie was warmly welcomed.
This pie crust recipe is so versatile that it works well to form the base for your cheese cakes, tarts or simply cut them out using fancy cookie cutters. This recipe gives you the crust for two six inch pans plus I rolled out almost ten cookie squares.
For the shortbread pie crust
- All-purpose flour – 2 and half cup (320 grams approx.)
- Confectioner’s sugar/Icing Sugar two –third cup (87 grams approx.)
- Salted butter – 200 grams
- Rose petal Jam / Gulkand – 1 Tablespoon.
- Pink colour (optional) few drops.
For the Custard filling
- Sugar – three fourth cup
- Corn starch 4 Tablespoons
- Milk 1 cup plus half cup.
- Fresh Cream 1 cup
- Butter (salted) 50 grams.
- Kashmiri Kesar/Saffron essence- 1 teaspoon
- Saffron few strands
- Crushed Pistachios for sprinkling on top.
For the pie crust
- Preheat your oven to 350 F or 150-170 C.
- Beat butter and sugar till light and creamy using a wooden spoon or with your hand mixer on a low speed.
- Add in the flour and rose petal jam. Blend them lightly with the pink colour until the mix turns coarse and crumbly. Gather these and form into ball.
- Divide the dough into small balls. The mixture will be lightly sticky and more buttery. That’s the texture we want.
- Roll each ball flat between a folded sheet of butter paper. Refrigerate this rolled out dough with the paper for 7 minutes.
- Take out and transfer to press into a loose bottom pie dish or bake pan. Bake the crust for ten to fifteen minutes until lightly golden. Take care not to burn them. Take it off the oven and allow cooling in the pan.
For the filling
- Take a medium sauce pan, combine sugar, 1 cup of milk and fresh cream onto a low heat.
- Dissolve the strands of saffron and corn starch in the remaining half cup of warm milk.
- Add the corn starch and saffron milk to the saucepan. Whisk and cook over medium heat until the mixture is thickened and bubbly. Keep stirring.
- Cut the flame and add the butter and saffron essence. Keep stirring until the butter has melted and the custard is glossy.
- Pour into the prepared pie crust and sprinkle the crushed pistachios. Allow it to cool and transfer to refrigerate for 4- 6 hours or until ready to serve.
Refer Below to Bake seriously……..This is serious baking……
- You don’t need any fancy mixers to make the dough. You can use your hands to combine the dough.
- Do not substitute other fruit jam for Rose petal Jam. The gulkand or rose petal jam adds aroma and flavour to the crust. It You can use vanilla or other essence to the shortbread dough.
- Don’t worry if the crust breaks while transferring to the baking pan. You can pinch and press the dough to seal them before baking.
- You don’t need to butter the bake pan. Once baked and cooled the crust will come out easily.
- Blind baking is not necessary for this type of crust. But you can prick the base of the crust with a fork to avoid puffing up while baking.
- Corn flour can be substituted with readily available custard mix. I added the Kashmiri Kesar essence to enhance the flavour of the Saffron with a tint of yellow colour but you can use any flavours of your choice.
- Pie crust can be made ahead and stored for until a week in an airtight container.
- Don’t worry if you don’t have a loose bottom pan. Any simple cake pan will work for this pie.
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Happy Cooking and be healthy.