Recipe: the coziest homemade pumpkin pie from Mabel’s Bakery on Roncesvalles

Recipe: the coziest homemade pumpkin pie from Mabel’s Bakery on Roncesvalles

Toronto Life Cookbook 2013: Pumpkin Pie

By Lorraine Hawley
Mabel’s Bakery

PREP TIME: 30 minutes
BAKE TIME: 45 minutes
Serves 8 to 12


1 egg yolk
1 tbsp vodka
Cold water
1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 pinch salt
¼ cup chilled vegetable shortening, cubed
¼ cup chilled butter, cubed


½ cup packed brown sugar
½ tsp salt
¾ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground ginger
½ tsp ground cloves or nutmeg
2 eggs
1 398-mL can pumpkin purée
¾ cup whipping cream
½ cup buttermilk
¼ cup maple syrup

1. To prepare pie crust, place egg yolk and vodka in a measuring cup. Fill with cold water until the measuring cup reads 125 mL. Whisk lightly.

2. Place flour in a large bowl. Stir in salt. Add shortening and butter and, using your index fingers and thumbs, incorporate into flour mixture until the largest pieces are the size of hazelnuts. Pour on enough water-egg mixture to allow you to manipulate the dough into a ball. Be careful not to overwork dough. Refrigerate until chilled. Roll out on a floured surface and form a 13- to 14-inch circle. Roll up dough around the rolling pin. Unroll it over a 9 or 10-inch greased pie plate. Trim to create a 1-inch overhang. Tuck and press edge of dough under itself. Using index fingers and thumb, crimp into a fluted edge. Chill until ready to use.

3. Preheat oven to 350°F. To prepare filling, stir sugar, salt and spices together in a medium bowl. Whisk in eggs, then pumpkin purée, whipping cream, buttermilk and maple syrup. Pour into prepared pie shell.

4. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes until filling is slightly jiggly but firm around the edges. Cool completely before serving. Don’t worry if filling cracks a little. Serve with dollops
of whipped cream.

Toronto Life Cookbook 2013: Pumpkin Pie
Hawley uses all-purpose flour for this recipe but adjusts the water content to suit the season. In winter, when it’s less humid outside, she uses slightly more cold water to achieve the right crust consistency.

Toronto Life Cookbook 2013: Pumpkin PieLORRAINE HAWLEY

Before Roncesvalles Avenue transformed into restaurant row, Lorraine Hawley’s sunny bakery stood out among the Polish pierogi houses. Mabel’s (named for her niece) is still the bakery of choice among Roncesvallians, with Hawley’s flaky-crusted pies selling out regularly—especially on Thanksgiving, when this pumpkin pie starts disappearing by the bus-load. The thick filling is all earthy pumpkin, ginger bite and clove spice, with a wisp of smoky sweetness from the maple syrup. Like all great pies, it tastes best homemade.

Recipes developed by Victoria Walsh. Recipe photography by Ryan Szulc. Illustrations by Aleksandar Janicijevic. Interviews by Meaghan Binstock, Chantal Braganza, Matthew Hague, Peter Saltsman, Courtney Shea and Caroline Youdan.