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Music professor featured in Bon Appétit magazine

Ethan Sperry (music) studied conducting at age eight, cello by age 12 and singing at 18. He’s led performances all over the world and conducts the Men’s Glee Club, Collegiate Chorale, Global Rhythms Ensemble and teaches vocal music, choral music and music of Russia.

He’s also a cook. Sperry, wife Siri Hoogen and their Thanksgiving spread is the “Entertaining With Style” feature in the current issue of Bon Appétit.

The magazine sent a crew for a photo shoot at the Sperry home in May, transforming it into a cozy fall afternoon. Guests included Jeffrey Wanko (teacher education), his wife, Molly Wanko, and friends from Youngstown, Till and Laura Meyn. “Till is a composer friend of mine who has written a piece for the Men’s Glee Club,” says Sperry.

Not featured on camera were the young children of those attending; Max Sperry, Aaron Wanko and Samuel Meyn.

The Bon Appetit menu includes a brined turkey, Scandinavian mushroom pie for vegetarians, Swedish rye bread, side dishes of beans and potato wedges, butternut squash soup, cranberry-orange relish and a pineapple-cranberry cobbler for dessert.

Sperry’s favorite recipe, pumpkin pie, was not featured but is included here. “It is my own recipe,” says Sperry. “I cook quite a lot and have won awards for my baking. My wife is also a superb cook.”

Ethan Sperry’s Pumpkin Pie
3 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup whole milk
1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3  cups all-purpose flour
Place butter, milk, egg yolk, sugar and salt in a food processor. Pulse a few times and then blend until roughly blended. Add flour and pulse until mixture starts to come together. When the dough forms moist clumps and starts to gather into a ball, stop. Gather dough into a large ball and then divide into two pieces. Press each piece into a disk, wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least four hours or overnight.
Remove dough from refrigerator 30 minutes before rolling out. Using a rolling pin on a floured surface, roll out one disk so that it will slightly overfill a 10-inch pie plate.
Place dough in 10-inch pie plate, folding back edges to make thick sides on crust. Use second crust for another pie.

2 cups canned pumpkin
2/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
 teaspoon ground cloves
 teaspoon cream of tartar
 teaspoon salt
 tsp. ground cardamom (optional)
ı cup milk
2 eggs, well beaten
1 cup heavy cream
fl cup sweet bourbon (Maker’s Mark, Jim Beam or Eagle Rare)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Combine pumpkin, sugar, salt and spices in a large mixing bowl. Mix lightly. Add milk, eggs, cream and bourbon all at once and combine with an electric mixer until smooth.
Pour filling into prepared crust.
Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake an additional 45 minutes or until an inserted knife or cake tester comes out clean.

Date Published: 11/09/2006
Volume: 26   Number: 9


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