1. We had an uncarved pumpkin left over from Halloween and an unused pie crust left over from Christmas in the freezer. I will make a pie, I thought; I am an empty-the-pantry genius. Waste not, want not!
2. What kind of pumpkin do we have, besides a long-lasting-at-room-temperature one? Well. A "small pumpkin" according to the label on the squash. Very helpful. I remember that I got it from one of the big bins outside and not from the small stand of pie pumpkins in the produce section; but that shouldn't matter, right? Not really? A pumpkin is a pumpkin, after all.
3. Slice open the pumpkin: clean and fresh inside. Scoop out seeds; bake. (Face down in a tray of water for an hour and fifteen minutes at 350 degrees, for those of you following along at home, which [foreshadowing] I do not recommend.)
4. Scrape out the baked flesh. It sure peels off the skin in long easy strips. Maybe a little too easy. Also a little too strippy. Like spaghetti squash. Hmm. Blend; put in double boiler and add 3 beaten eggs, 3/4 cup of sugar, salt and cinnamon-ginger-cloves. Oh, and 3/4 cup cream. Only I don't have cream, so I put in half and half. Bake pie shell.
5. Hmm. It sure looks kind of...separate. Like I'm mixing chocolate milk with squash chunks.
6. Now it looks more like crumbled brown sugar mixed with squash chunks, with water poured over.
7. Pour off water. Blend the remains. Still oddly separate. Hmm. Sometimes homemade is a little less than picture-perfect, right? It's part of the charm. Pour/ scrape slightly sticky pumpkin custard (somehow custard is not the first thing that comes to mind, here) into baked pie crust. Hmm. Put in still-warm oven for fifteen minutes just...because. Because an additional step seems called for. Because right now the pie looks like I soaked cat kibble in milk overnight and poured it into a pie crust.
8. Well, it will still taste good, right?
9. Verdict: no.
10. If you must know, it tastes like I tried to make a pie with the slimy goop that the seeds come in. Blech.
11. Am still empty-the-pantry genius, only in the directly-to-trash, do not pass go, do not collect two hundred dollars sense.