ISO Gingersnap crust for Pumpkin Pie
I am wondering if anyone has a great recipe for a Gingersnap Crust? There is a cafe in Los Angeles called Urth that makes a delicious pumpkin pie with a gingernap crust. Since this board is national, I will try to describe it: the crust and is very thick, and almost slightly chewy. It is also baked it in a tart pan, as the edges are scalloped. I think they are doing something different than just subbing gingernaps for a traditional graham cracker, as the consistancy is so much sturdier. I also detect molasses in the crust...
Thoughts? Recipes? Go to brands of ginersnaps?
Looking forward to pumpkin season!
I developed a recipe for pumpkin pie with gingersnap crust for a Thanksgiving article. I used about 35 1½-inch diameter gingersnaps and 6 tablespoons butter. Using a food processor, grind the gingersnaps into fine crumbs to make about 1-1/3 cups. Melt butter, and with machine running, slowly add melted butter to ground gingersnaps. Press mixture evenly to outer edges of 9-inch pie pan.
The only difference between a gingersnap and a graham cracker crust is that the gingersnap crust is not blind-baked before adding the filling -- it gets too dark when it does. I'd avoid adding crystallized ginger to the crust -- it can easily burn. I always garnish the top of this pie with tiny bits of crystallized ginger however. In regards to the thickness, simply make a thicker crust (adjust quantities or make a second batch as needed). Most gingersnaps have molasses added to them; that seems to turn the crust a dark brown when baking as the molasses liquifies. I'd make the plain version as I've described first, and then experiment by adding cloves, allspice, cinnamon or additional powdered ginger as you see fit. I really love spicy ginger things, but I don't think the recipe as is requires any doctoring. But see for yourself.
My favorite Thanksgiving dessert recipe is for a pumpkin mousse cake with Jack Daniels and a gingersnap crust. I'm not sure if the crust is as you describe, mine is definitely just a gingersnap sub for graham crackers, but I find that Anna's (Swedish brand) gingersnaps really do the trick. You can find the recipe at Epicurious.com, it was featured in Bon Appetit in maybe '97 or '98...or'99. Maybe Urth is using straight up gingerBREAD. In which case I use (of all things) the gingerbread cookie recipe from the Joy of Cooking (as featured in the NYT when JOC was re-printed and updated in the '90s). I've been baking gingerbread cookies using that recipe for Christmas for probably about 10 years, and it's great... a friend of my mother's wanted me to open a bakery in the Dominican Republic based purely on my gingerbread rendition.