1 cup (2 sticks) margarine
1½ cups flour
½ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon ginger

Pumpkin Custard
2 cups coconut milk, divided
4 egg yolks
1 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
¼ teaspoon salt
15 ounces pumpkin purée
⅛ teaspoon pumpkin spice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons margarine

Pecan Crisps
⅓ cup packed dark brown sugar
4 tablespoons (½ stick) margarine
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup ground pecans, finely chopped
½ cup pecans, finely chopped
¼ cup flour
1 teaspoon orange zest

Candied Oranges
3 oranges, sliced
1 cup water
1 cup sugar

Cranberry Sauce
1 cup cranberries
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon orange zest

Marshmallow Fluff, for plating

  1. Prepare the crust. Place all the ingredients in a food processor and pulse a few times. Then mix for a few more seconds until it forms a dough. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350ºF. Remove dough from refrigerator and use your fingers to press the dough into a 10-inch tart. Refrigerate for another 20 minutes. Bake for 25 minutes.
  3. Prepare the custard. Whisk ½ cup coconut milk with the egg yolks in a large mixing bowl. Gradually add cornstarch in small amounts, whisking to prevent clumping.
  4. Heat remaining milk and brown sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat; stir until the sugar has dissolved. Once the mixture begins to bubble, slowly whisk the hot milk into the cornstarch mixture so that the eggs don’t curdle. Add salt, pumpkin purée, pumpkin spice, vanilla, and cinnamon. Mix until it forms a homogeneous mixture.
  5. Return the mixture to a double boiler and increase the heat to medium–high. Stirring constantly, mix until mixture has thickened into a custard. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. While the custard is still hot, whisk in margarine. Pour custard into a large glass bowl and cover it with plastic wrap (directly on the pudding so that a skin doesn’t form). Refrigerate for at least 1 hour so the pudding can set.
  6. Prepare the pecan crisps. Preheat oven to 325ºF. Line a baking sheet.
  7. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine sugar, margarine, honey, corn syrup, and salt. Stir until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and stir in pecans, flour, and orange zest. Transfer the mixture to prepared baking sheet and spread using an offset spatula.
  8. Bake for 10 minutes or until crisp. Let cool and break into little shards.
  9. Prepare the candied oranges. Fill a large bowl with ice water and add the sliced oranges; set aside.
  10. Combine sugar and water in a large pan on medium heat. Bring to a boil and heat until sugar dissolves. Lower heat to medium–low and place cold orange slices in the sugar water in a single layer. Allow orange slices to cook for approximately 40-45 minutes (or until the orange rind is translucent). Remove from the pan and place on a cooling rack for 1 hour. Refrigerate in an airtight container.
  11. Prepare the cranberry sauce. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine all the ingredients. Cook for approximately 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Use a hand blender to purée.
  12. See “How to Plate This Dessert” for assembly instructions.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

How to Plate this dessert
Start by placing a dollop of the pumpkin custard in the corner of the plate. With a silicone round arch plating wedge (which can be purchased at Peppermill) or the back of a spoon, make a small indentation and stroke the tool through it.

Break the tart shell into small pieces and scatter them on top of the pumpkin custard.

Fill a pastry bag with Marshmallow Fluff and pipe small dots on top of the small tart pieces. Using a kitchen torch, torch Fluff until the edges are browned.

Scatter the shards of pecan crisps in between the tart shell pieces.

Using a deco spoon or a regular spoon, create dots of different sizes with the cranberry sauce on the other side of the plate.

Cut candied oranges into four. Scatter randomly on the plate.
This dessert includes everything you love about pumpkin pie, but deconstructed for a special presentation. What I love about this dish is that everything is baked to perfection on its own, so you don’t wind up with a soggy crust or a runny custard. The key to making this dish beautiful is to allow your hands to flow naturally so that you come out with a work of modern art.


For more great recipes, check out this weeks issue of Whisk by Ami