(OK, techincally I also made one at Xmas of 2013 too, but that's almost 2 years ago.)
As always, I use Joe's recipe but, year before last, I began to make my crusts with rice flour. I think you'll agree, if you check out the look of that crust vs this one, I've improved my technique. Sure, rice flour serves the purpose of creating a gluten-free pie but, really, the reason I use rice flour is because it's finer and it creates a grittier crust (like sable, so revered by the French). It's not as simple to make a rice flour crust as a wheat flour one. Gluten is a protein that acts as a binding agent. That's what makes it easier to roll and transfer to the pie plate. You need a light hand, a perfectly chilled/rested pastry and confidence when it comes to making a rice-flour crust. Also, don't roll it quite as thin as a wheat-flour crust. I mean, you don't want it thick - but don't go crazy cuz it likes to fall apart. As such, I use about 25 per cent more pastry when making a rice flour crust than I do on a wheat flour one. That's to offset the necessary extra thickness. (But, because it doesn't contain gluten, rice flour crust doesn't get heavy or dense. It stays buttery and light...)
I use wax paper (to roll the crust between) and I position the pie shell on top of the rolled pastry and turn the one into the other with the wax paper still affixed (on what starts off as the bottom of the crust and then becomes the top, after the transfer). FYI, rice flour crust blind bakes much the same as wheat flour crust - so no worries about needing to baby it. I do turn down the heat from 375 to 350 but I'm apt to do that with a wheat crust too.
To understate things completely, I love the smell of a house after making a pumpkin pie. The cloves, cinnamon and ginger seem to simmer with warmth and they balance the sweetness and cream of the pumpkin custard. A good pumpkin pie is sublime - bacchanalian and healthy all at once, to the extent that I actually feel cognitive dissonance while eating! I love to dose it with a large spoon of unsweetened semi-whipped cream (flavoured with vanilla extract). It's freakin' vegetables for dessert, people - what's not to love?
Ah, but this pie polarizes, no? You love it or hate it - which is why I so infrequently make it. My husband won't touch it. Neither will approximately half of any group of guests. And it takes a long time to make if you do the crust in the same go-round as the rest of it. Happily, my kid is in the "I love pumpkin pie" camp so we'll eat half of it tonight and the rest for breakfast tomorrow.
What? Don't tell me that this ain't health food.
Where do you fall on the spectrum? Pumpkin pie for the win? Or do you secretly feed it to the dog when no one's looking?