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Non-Traditional Thanksgiving Traditions

My German mother owned Thanksgiving as well as any American born mom, creating traditions and memories that have carried me through the years. Her turkeys were perfectly golden and juicy, potatoes creamy and full of flavor, and her twist on traditional desserts had mouths watering.

One specialty was her unique take on the pumpkin pie which has now spoiled my taste buds for boring and traditional pumpkin pies. So for anyone wanting to be a little different here is her amazing recipe.


3/4 c walnuts (optional)

1/4 c cold water

3/4 c sugar

3 eggs, separated

1/2 tsp salt

1 c whipping cream

1 envelope gelatin

1 can pumpkin

1/2 c milk

1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1/4 tsp vanilla

1 nine inch pie crust


1. Cook pie shell as directions state.

2. Soften gelatin in water in large saucepan. Stir in Pumpkin, 1/2 c sugar, milk, lightly beaten egg yolks, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.

3. Heat to just boiling, stirring constantly. Turn heat to low and cook for 5 minutes. Add vanilla and cool. Chill until mixture thickens.

4. Beat egg whites to soft peaks and gradually beat in 2 T sugar until stiff. Fold into the pumpkin mixture (with walnuts if desired).

5. Beat whipping cream and remaining sugar until very stiff.

6. Turn half the pumpkin mixture into pie shell. Top with 3/4 of the whipped cream and spread evenly. Spoon on the remaining pumpkin mixture. Decorate with the remaining whipped cream.

7. Chill at least 4 hours before serving.

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