For so long I have been intimated by the big giant squashes, including the ever popular pumpkin. It's a bit sad that fresh pumpkins rarely get actually eaten, but instead get carved and left to rot on our front porches. That was about the extent of my fresh pumpkin experience. Last year though, I decided to go for it and made a pumpkin pie out of an actual pumpkin instead of relying on Libby to roast, puree, and put it on the grocery shelf for me to buy.
To my surprise, making pumpkin puree was not difficult at all. The hardest part is cutting it in half. If you can do that, the rest is cake.
To make pumpkin puree, you cut a pie pumpkin in half and cut off the stem. Then you scoop out the seeds and stringy goop. Place cut side down on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for about an hour and a half or until it's nice and soft. Then remove from oven and let it cool for a few minutes to prevent yourself from scorching your hands trying to handle the molten hot pumpkin...ahem. The flesh should easily scoop out from the skin. Put it in a bowl and mix it with a hand mixer or immersion blender until it's a puree. Easy peasy. Then you can proceed with your pumpkin recipes.
I decided to make pumpkin muffins today because my little guy loves muffins and this is one way where I can get another vegetable in his system.
- 1 pie pumpkin roasted and made into puree as instructed above. You will need 1 ½ cups pumpkin puree
- 1 ½ cup organic sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 ¾ cup flour
- 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground cloves
- ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- Mix pumpkin puree, sugar, eggs, and vanilla together.
- Sift together flour, and remaining dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
- Mix together until just combined.
- Fill each muffin liner in a muffin tin up ⅔ of the way full.
- Bake at 350 for 18-20 minutes.