Friday, October 15, 2010

And Still More Pumpkin

Canned pumpkin is great. I know I missed it last fall when there was a shortage. But making your own pumpkin puree is not hard. In fact, it's pretty fun, hacking into the big orange gourd with a sharp knife, cracking it in half and scooping out all the guts. Well, I find that fun, anyway.

The Specimen

Step 1. Preoccupy your hyper child with a pumpkin of their own.

You know, for pumpkin bowling.

Step 2. Preheat oven to 350F. Cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out the seeds and guts. Rinse and reserve the seeds for roasting.

Step 3. Cover the cut side of pumpkin pieces with aluminum foil and place on a baking sheet, foil side up. Bake for 90 minutes or until the flesh is easily pierced with a fork. Set aside to cool.

Step 4. Once cooled, scoop pumpkin flesh from both halves into food processor and puree until smooth.

Step 5. Use just as you would canned pumpkin. For example, how about some Curried Pumpkin Soup from 1000 Vegan Recipes?

Step 6. What about those seeds? Place them in a saucepan with enough water to cover them, plus about another inch of water. Add 1 tsp. salt and bring to a boil. Then reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Drain and pat dry. Toss them with a little olive oil and a sprinkling of salt, and spread on a cookie sheet. Bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees.

I'm not sure why, but the boiling helps them stay nice and crispy, instead of tough and chewy.

I promise -- tomorrow, something besides pumpkin!


  1. Thanks for the tip on the seeds! I'm always a little intimidated by fresh pumpkin... Not sure why considering I eat and cook so much squash, haha.

    P.S. Adorable little guy you have there with the pumpkin! :)

  2. Pumpkin bowling sounds like fun:) Pumpkins and kids seem to go well together.

  3. Hmmm, never boiled the pumpkin seeds first...I'll have to give that a try the next time.

  4. I baked a pumpkin for the first time last year and pureed the whole thing for pumpkin soup. It was so delicious. Do your recipes say to use the skin or not? We did, even though I thought for sure it would be "tough" or something. I didn't know about boiling them, either - thanks for the tip.

  5. jenny, i didn't use the skin -- it was pretty leathery after it came out of the oven. i wonder if it adds more flavor to the puree, though.