Delicious Thanksgiving Dessert to Wow Your Guests

If you’re looking for a dessert that will impress your Thanksgiving guests, look no further than the Pilgrim Father’s original pumpkin pie – also known as the Norfolk Million Pie recipe. This classic dessert has been around since the 17th century and is a staple in American homes during the fall season.

But what sets this recipe apart from other pumpkin pies? First of all, it uses a combination of currants and raisins to give it a unique texture and flavor profile. Second, the spices used – ground cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg – create a warm and fragrant aroma that will fill your kitchen as it bakes. And third, the recipe itself has historic roots dating back to when Native Americans introduced pumpkin to the Pilgrim Fathers during their first Thanksgiving feast.

In fact, this recipe is so iconic that it was featured in the 2009 movie “Julie & Julia” as one of the dishes that blogger Julie Powell cooked her way through in her quest to master Julia Child’s recipes. So why not try your hand at this traditional and time-tested dish? Your guests will be impressed with your culinary skills and your knowledge of American history.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

The Pilgrim Father's Original Pumpkin Pie - Norfolk Million Pie
The Pilgrim Father’s Original Pumpkin Pie – Norfolk Million Pie

If you’re looking for a delicious and authentic taste of history, then you’ll love the Norfolk Million Pie recipe! This recipe has been passed down for centuries, with roots tracing all the way back to the Pilgrim Fathers themselves. With its perfect blend of spices, fresh pumpkin, currants, raisins, and more, this recipe is sure to please any pie lover.

What sets this pumpkin pie apart from the rest is its unique blend of spices. The combination of ground cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg gives it a distinctly warm and cozy flavor that will have your mouth watering before you even take your first bite. And with real pumpkin as the main ingredient, this pie provides a fresh and authentic taste that canned pumpkin pies simply can’t match.

But what really makes this recipe a must-try is its historical significance. The Pilgrim Fathers who arrived in America on the Mayflower in 1620 are said to have brought this recipe with them from England. Over time, it evolved into what we now know as the Norfolk Million Pie – a traditional English dish that’s still enjoyed by many today.

So why not take a step back in time and enjoy this delicious piece of history? Whether you’re looking for a dessert for Thanksgiving dinner or just a sweet treat to enjoy any day of the year, this pumpkin pie recipe is sure to satisfy your cravings for something truly special.

Ingredient List

“A slice of autumn in every bite”

Here is everything you will need to recreate the Pilgrim Father’s Original Pumpkin Pie – Norfolk Million Pie Recipe at home:

For the Filling:

  • 1 1/2 lbs. pumpkin
  • 1 1/2 lbs. marrow (or extra pumpkin)
  • 8 ounces currants
  • 8 ounces raisins
  • 8 ounces brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 pint milk
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

For the Pastry:

  • 8 ounces shortcrust pastry

Note that you can use canned pumpkin puree for this recipe, but we highly recommend using fresh pumpkin for maximum flavor.

For those who are unaware, marrow is a type of squash that can be found in many ethnicity grocery stores. In case it’s not available in your local market or grocery store, extra pumpkin is a good substitute.

Ingredient Ratios:

This recipe makes for one 9-inch pie. If you would like to make more pies or want a thicker crust, you can double the ingredient ratios as required.

The Recipe How-To

“The ultimate comfort dessert”

Let’s get started with the recipe that has been passed down from The Pilgrim Fathers. To make this Norfolk Million Pie, we will use a combination of pumpkin and marrow instead of only using pumpkin, which makes the pie moist and flavorful. Here is how you can make your own original Pilgrim Father’s Pumpkin Pie:


Step 1: Prepare the Filling

Begin by preheating the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4. Peel and dice the pumpkin and marrow into small pieces, then cook them in boiling water until they are tender (about 10 minutes). Drain the vegetables and mash them together until smooth.

Step 2: Mix the Ingredients

In a mixing bowl, whisk the eggs until they are light and fluffy. Add in the mashed vegetables, brown sugar, milk, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Mix well until all of the ingredients are fully incorporated. Fold

Substitutions and Variations

“Fall flavors in a pie crust”

When it comes to making the perfect pumpkin pie, traditional recipes can leave little room for improvisation. However, there are a few ingredient substitutions and variations one can make to add their own unique twist to this classic dish.

For those who prefer to avoid dairy, you can use coconut milk or almond milk in place of regular milk. This will give your pumpkin pie a nuttier taste and a creamier texture.

If you’re looking for an extra burst of flavor, you can add currants or raisins to the filling mixture. These sweet, juicy fruits pair well with the warm spices of ground cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg that typically go into a pumpkin pie recipe.

For a more health-conscious version of the traditional pumpkin pie, try reducing the amount of sugar or using alternative sweeteners like honey, maple syrup or agave nectar. You can also use granulated stevia instead of sugar.

For those who love a good crust but want to switch things up, consider using a graham cracker crust in place of the shortcrust pastry. This will add a subtle hint of sweetness that balances well with the spiciness of the filling.

Finally, for those who want to take their pumpkin pie game to a whole new level, you can try adding other ingredients like pecans or chocolate chips to the filling mixture. Your guests will be pleasantly surprised by these unexpected additions.

Regardless of what variation or substitution you choose, these tweaks are sure to add some excitement and flavor into your standard pumpkin pie recipe.

Serving and Pairing

“The perfect ending to your holiday meal”

Serve this delectable Norfolk Million Pie recipe as a showstopper for Thanksgiving dinner or any fall occasion. Top off the pie with fresh whipped cream and dust it with cinnamon powder for an added touch of perfection.

This pie pairs well with a variety of beverages, such as coffee, hot cocoa, apple cider, or even a festive pumpkin spiced latte to complement the flavors of the spices used in the pie.

For a savory option, try pairing this sweet pie with Norfolk Pork Pie, also known as pork and apple pie – a classic British dish that originates from East Anglia, the same region where the original pumpkin pie recipe came from. The savory pork filling will be an excellent contrast to the sweet and spicy notes of the pumpkin million pie.

Make sure you cut generous portions of the pie because this traditional pumpkin recipe will be a crowd-pleaser that everyone will want. Wow your guests with this legendary English Pumpkin Pie – Norfolk Million Pie Recipe that’s been passed down for generations; it’s sure to become a new family tradition!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

“You won’t be able to resist this traditional delight”

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, busy hosts will appreciate a dish that can be made ahead of time and stored easily. Thankfully, this Original Pumpkin Pie recipe can be prepared in advance and stored for several days without losing its signature taste.

To make ahead, simply follow the baking instructions as described in section (4) of this article. Once the pie has cooled to room temperature, cover it tightly with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator. The pie can be made up to two days in advance and still maintain its irresistible flavor.

Freezing is another option for those who want to make their pies well in advance. After baking, let the pie cool and then wrap it tightly in plastic wrap followed by aluminum foil. It can stay frozen for up to two months. Before serving, allow the pie to thaw in the refrigerator overnight, and reheat on a baking sheet at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-15 minutes.

If you’re looking to serve your pumpkin pie warm, pop a slice or two into the microwave for about 30-45 seconds or reheat them in a preheated oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 5-7 minutes. To maintain the perfect texture, always ensure that your reheating method doesn’t dry out or burn the crust.

When storing your leftover pumpkin pie, cover it with plastic wrap or foil and store it in the refrigerator for up to five days. You can simply reheat them following the instructions above if you like them warm.

Keep these tips in mind while making this dish so you can spend less time worrying about preparation on Turkey day and more time enjoying your delicious meal!

Tips for Perfect Results

“A heavenly combination of spices and pumpkin”

Achieving the perfect pumpkin pie is an art in itself. Here are some tips to ensure that your Norfolk Million Pie turns out amazing:

Firstly, I suggest using fresh pumpkin for better flavour and texture rather than canned pumpkin. To prepare the pumpkin, cut it into pieces and roast it in the oven until it’s tender. Once done, remove the flesh from the skin and mash it with a fork.

Next, let’s talk about the pastry which is just as important as the filling. It’s best to use a shortcrust pastry made from scratch so that it can be rolled out thin enough to give you a crispy crust while being firm enough to hold in all that rich goodness.

When making the filling, make sure that all of the ingredients are at room temperature to avoid curdling when you mix them together. It’s best to use brown sugar instead of white sugar for better flavor.

Spices play a significant role in a pumpkin pie recipe. Ground cinnamon, ground ginger, and ground nutmeg are commonly used in pumpkin pies. Be mindful not to overuse these spices, or they will overpower the other flavors. For optimal results, try experimenting with different combinations of spices.

Adding currants or raisins to your filling mixture can enhance the flavour of your pie while also adding a little sweet indulgence. To prevent them from sinking and sticking to the bottom of the pie, coat them with flour before adding them to your filling.

If you’re feeling adventurous with your pumpkin pie recipe, add 8 ounces of cooked Norfolk Pork or 1 1/2 lbs marrow instead of currants and raisins – this yields an interesting and delicious variation known as Norfolk Million Pie!

Lastly, make sure not to overbake your pie. The perfect bake-time should be around 50-60 minutes at 350°F (or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean). Overbaking leads to dryness, cracks on top or around the edges, burnt crusts and wasted effort.

Following these tips will enable you to make a perfect Norfolk Million Pie every time!


Now that you have all the information on how to make the Pilgrim Father’s Original Pumpkin Pie – Norfolk Million Pie Recipe, it’s time to answer some questions that might arise during the preparation of this traditional delicacy. Here are some frequently asked questions and their respective answers, to help you achieve a perfect result.

What is Norfolk pie?

Indulge in the delectable taste of our Norfolk Porker Pork Pies, which are handcrafted using only the highest quality ingredients. We stuff these pies with 100% Free Range Norfolk Pork blended with premium herbs, resulting in the ultimate pork pie experience in Norfolk. Encased in a delicate, buttery crust, this pork pie is so irresistible that it may pose a threat to your self-control.

How did Native Americans make pumpkin pie?

Pumpkins were of great significance to Northeastern Native American tribes, who stewed and baked them with honey and spices. When the first settlers were presented with pumpkins as gifts, they were taught about the wide variety of uses for this versatile vegetable.

How are Costco pumpkin pies made?

When preparing pumpkins for pies at Costco, we take the extra step of cooking the chunks of pumpkin twice. The first time is before pureeing, and the second is after canning. The pureed pumpkin undergoes a lengthy cooking process of five and a half hours before being deemed suitable for pie filling. This may seem like a lot of work, but it ensures that our customers get the best possible pumpkin pie experience.

What was the original Thanksgiving pie?

Pumpkin pie has been around for centuries and has undergone various changes in its recipe. One of the earliest known versions of pumpkin pie was created by a woman named Hannah Woolley in 1670. Her recipe involved using pumpkin, apple, and spices like thyme, rosemary, and marjoram to make a layered pie. As time passed, the recipe evolved and by the 1700s, the pumpkin custard-filled pie that we enjoy today had become more popular.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, The Pilgrim Father’s Original Pumpkin Pie – Norfolk Million Pie Recipe is a timeless classic recipe that has stood the test of time for decades. This recipe has been passed down from generation to generation and has remained a favorite of many, thanks to its unforgettable taste and aroma.

This pie recipe is so versatile that it can be enjoyed in any season and any occasion, whether it’s a family dinner, Thanksgiving celebration or Christmas gathering. The aromatic blend of ground cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg will fill your home with an irresistible fragrance that will have your family and friends begging for more.

If you’re looking for a unique twist on a traditional pumpkin pie recipe, The Pilgrim Father’s Original Pumpkin Pie – Norfolk Million Pie Recipe is exactly what you need. With its combination of currants, raisins, milk, brown sugar, pumpkin puree, eggs and shortcrust pastry, this pie will leave you wanting more.

Don’t hesitate to make this original pumpkin pie by the Pilgrim Fathers today. This recipe will give you the chance to try the flavors of old English recipes with a history dating back over 50 million years. So what are you waiting for? Grab your ingredients and start baking!

The Pilgrim Father's Original Pumpkin Pie - Norfolk Million Pie

The Pilgrim Father's Original Pumpkin Pie - Norfolk Million Pie Recipe

This is a very old English pumpkin pie recipe from Norfolk in East Anglia; it would have been known as Norfolk million pie - million being the old English word for a melon, marrow, pumpkin or any kind of gourd or squash. Please note, this is not the same as most of the modern North American pumpkin pie recipes, but is based on the original recipe from the 15th/16th century. As many of the Pilgrim Father's originated from East Anglia, this recipe undoubtedly crossed the Atlantic with them, and was probably served at their Thanksgiving dinner for the first harvest in the New World - pumpkins being in abundance there! You can use marrow or squash in this pie if you wish, it works just as well as it would have done in the 15th/16th Century! Please note, this recipe uses fresh pumpkin.
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: < 4 Hours, Dessert, European, Pie, Spicy, Vegetable
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 1 Pumpkin Pie
Calories: 322.9kcal


  • 8 ounces shortcrust pastry
  • 1 1/2 lbs pumpkin or 1 1/2 lbs marrow, peeled and fibrous centre removed, cut into cubes
  • 3 ounces brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 5 tablespoons milk
  • 1 ounce currants or 1 ounce raisins


  • Place the pumpkin in a colander over a pan of boiling water and steam for about 20 minutes or until tender. Mash to a pulp and allow to cool.
  • Grease and line a 10 - 12" diameter round tin with the shortcrust pastry and reserve the trimmings for decoration.
  • Prick the base, line with greaseproof paper and baking beans. Bake at 375F, Gas Mark 5, 190C for about 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Remove the beans and paper and bake for a further 5 minutes.
  • Whisk the eggs and sugar together with the nutmeg, ginger and ground cinnamon.
  • Fold in the mashed pumpkin, currants or raisins and 4 tablespoons of milk and pour into the pastry case.
  • Roll out the pastry trimmings and cut into strips with a pastry wheel.
  • Brush the strips and the pastry edges with the remaining milk and position strips in a criss-cross lattice pattern over the pie top.
  • Bake at 375F, Gas Mark 5, 190C for about 30 to 40 minutes, or until filling has set.
  • Cut into wedges and serve warm or cold with whipped cream.

Your Own Notes


Serving: 156g | Calories: 322.9kcal | Carbohydrates: 42.3g | Protein: 7.1g | Fat: 14.9g | Saturated Fat: 4.1g | Cholesterol: 107.5mg | Sodium: 230.8mg | Fiber: 2.7g | Sugar: 18.7g

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