Following up from my Pumpkin Fun and Yummies post, I finally did get around to roasting and pureeing a whole pumpkin. The day after Halloween I posted on Facebook that if anyone had an uncarved, small/medium pumpkin that they no longer wanted, I would be happy to take it off their hands. I had one offer and I picked it up the next day. Yay, for free pumpkins!
I chose the Fun Free or Cheap method of cooking the pumpkin. Since we don’t have a roasting pan, I put each half in a glass baking dish with water and seemed to be fine, having nothing to compare to, of course. It wasn’t particularly difficult (except that it turned out to be the first day of Kelsey getting sick and she was particularly cranky and needy) it just was a bit of a process. Now that I’ve done it once, I think I could streamline it a bit. Hopefully next year, I will be able to work while Kelsey plays by herself.
I poured an ice cube tray worth of puree and froze it for Kelsey. I still haven’t tried it with her yet, but I’m thinking some “baby pumpkin pie” is in her future with Thanksgiving around the corner. I’ll mix some with a little cinnamon for her and see how that goes.
After that, I filled plastic baggies with 1 cup portions of the puree and ended up with 5 1/2 cups in the freezer.
The main thing I noticed was that it looks a lot different from the canned pumpkin. I didn’t strain it before freezing, but basically I should be fine if I just let it sit in a strainer for a little while before I use it.
It was a rough week with Kelsey sick, then me sick, throwing my back out, and we took a day trip to Sea World. I finally got around to making the first recipe with my fresh pumpkin to see how it worked out. I made these Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies this evening and they were delicious!
I used Pumpkin Pie Spice Mix instead of the individual spices but followed everything else. They were fluffy and tasted like pumpkin pie with chocolate, so good!
I have also decided to give myself a domesticated challenge – I am going to make a pumpkin pie from scratch with my puree. I’m a little nervous, but hoping it turns out great. I found this recipe meant for using fresh puree and it has instructions for the crust so wish me luck!
I didn’t forget about the woman who gave me the pumpkin. We’ve had our fill of pumpkin seeds from Halloween so I roasted the ones from this pumpkin with just olive oil and salt and put them in a little decorated mason jar to give her as a thank you.