This is a really easy way to make pumpkin puree, so you’ll either be impressed by my genius after reading this or think I am extremely lazy. But before you go the lazy route, know also that I just finished folding 12 loads of laundry (it’s been a week or two since I folded laundry), cooked and canned applesauce and made pumpkin pie spice. All of which was easy too, but it added up to a few hours spent in the kitchen. I did manage to catch up on a few lost episodes of Criminal Minds on the laptop while folding laundry, so my day off had some downtime. And there was coffee. And a few thin mint Girl Guide cookies.
I’m not a fan of pumpkin goo; in fact I am never involved in the cleaning out of the Hallowe’en jack-o-lantern. The slimy feel of it makes me shiver. This is a much more civilized way to make pumpkin puree. It skips the gross stage altogether.
Just roast them whole. Find one or two small pie pumpkins (mine is straight out of the garden), wash them off, heat the oven to 350F and roast them for an hour to an hour and a half, until a knife goes right through the skin like butter. First though, you need to go a little Norman Bates on the pumpkin, stabbing it 5 or 6 times to let some steam escape while it’s roasting. When the knife test shows that it’s done, let it cool for 20 minutes or so, slice it in half and the goo and seeds will scoop out with one of two spoonfuls, effortlessly and without mess. You can keep the seeds for roasting or just toss the whole mess in the compost.
All that you have to do at that point is scoop the flesh out of the skin, pop it into a blender or food processor and process it until it’s smooth. My small pumpkin yielded 4 cups of puree. It’ll keep for a week in the fridge or you can freeze it in recipe size amounts and store it in the freezer. I have plans for mine later this weekend.
While I was in the kitchen, I made up a small container of pumpkin pie spice to use with my puree.
Pumpkin Pie Spice
- 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons nutmeg
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground allspice
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cloves
Measure spices into a small jar, screw lid back on and shake.
If, like us, you have a few pumpkins from the garden that you would like to store, click here to find storage tips. Later this weekend I will show you what I make with the puree and the spice, but for now I need to clean the kitchen. Once the girls get home from school, we’ll meet up with their dad in town and go out for dinner and then off to see Hotel Transylvania. It’s the closest I could get to convincing the dad to watch a zombie movie with me.