1. To ‘get into’ your pumpkin, first wash it thoroughly under running water and then open it in one of the following ways:
Each variety of winter squash has its own unique flavor, texture, and color. Some are rich and meaty, some sweet, and some, like jack-o-lantern or field pumpkins, are positively bland – yech. If you are growing squash be sure to check the seed description for clues as to flavor. If you buy at market, look for edible squash rather than decorative. They are usually displayed separately. [Read more…]
People are invariably surprised by how delicious this dish is. I first tasted it at the home of my friend Claire, who was hosting a dinner for a large group of Master Food Preservers gathered to plan the next year’s classes at OSU Extension, or I thought I did! I made mental notes as Claire prepared the dish and later went home and wrote down what I remembered. In talking with her recently it turns out my memory was not very accurate, but the dish sure is delicious! Such is the nature of recipes; they change with each cook.
Cubes of sweet pumpkin (any type of pumpkin or winter squash is suitable) are sauteed in a bit of butter until tender. Fresh sage leaves are cut in ribbons and sizzled in more butter, and the two are tossed into a pound of al dente spinach fettucchine. Divine!
This is an indulgent and yet healthful goody. You’ll love having a stash of Pumpkin Pie Fruit Leather for portable snacks. I played around with ideas for this recipe for about 3 pumpkin seasons and while it can be made without pectin I find the texture of the finished product more toothsome and less prone to cracking when I do use it. Feel free to alter the spices to suit your taste.
To simplify your morning, whisk the dry ingredients together, including spices, the night before. You may omit the nuts and cranberries, if you prefer, for an outcome of 12 muffins.
For many years spaghetti squash was touted as an alternative for spaghetti noodles and recipes for it involved various tomato-y sauces. You may prefer it prepared this way, with a dressing of butter and/or olive oil and herbs. You’ll appreciate the flavor and texture of the vegetable and perhaps even find yourself craving it like I do!
In fact most winter squash are filled with edible seeds. Some squash in the moschata or maxima family however have extremely tough fibrous seeds that are best not ingested, but the smooth seeds from your Halloween jack-o-lantern are not only edible, but delicious! So cook up that squash for Roasted Squash Puree or make Spaghetti Squash with Choice of Flavors, and then toast the seeds for a kid-friendly snack.
My first grade teacher, Mrs. Haugh (pronounced ‘Hawk’) sent each of her students home with a slip of paper with these directions. Even at 6 years old I was eager to try new recipes, and luckily I had a sympathetic and understanding mother who was willing to go along with the idea. Thanks for everything Mom! You are the best!
Pumpkin Yeast Bread is a nice change from the traditional baking soda-leavened quick bread. You may use any of the hard-shelled winter squashes, such as Butternut, Hubbard, Pink Banana, or even roasted sweet potato flesh for the Roasted Pumpkin or Winter Squash Puree. The dough is adaptable and may also be shaped into rolls.
I first tasted pumpkin seed butter at my local grower’s market and was utterly surprised at how delicious it was. The color is an unpromising shade of green that makes you think of kale or sprouts, but the flavor is anything but. In fact, it tastes more like almond butter or peanut butter – rich, luxurious, wonderful mouth-feel. I had to buy a jar of it. I then proceeded to eat it directly from the jar with a spoon over the next 3 days. It is that good. It is, of course good on toast or anywhere a nut butter might be appreciated. I find it especially delicious on Pumpkin Yeast Bread.
My second most-asked for recipe (right after Vanilla Laced Pear Jam) was inspired by a bumper harvest of heirloom Musquee de Provence pumpkins in 2007. Our 20 ‘ x 20’ pumpkin patch yielded more than two dozen of these gorgeous vegetable heirlooms, each weighing between 11 to 28 pounds. See Roasted Pumpkin or Winter Squash Puree for directions on processing your own pumpkins into recipe-friendly puree and Thrifty stock for directions on transforming your vegetable peelings and bits into lovely broth.
1 medium sweet onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
|Freeze Roasted Pumpkin Puree in recipe-size portions.|
1 stalk celery with leaves, chopped
1/2 tsp fresh thyme leaves or pinch dried thyme
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 tsp curry powder
2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups Homemade Pumpkin or Winter Squash Puree
1 medium apple or pear, peeled and chopped
1 Tablespoon sugar
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 quart Thrifty Stock (or 2- 15 oz. cans chicken broth)
1 -15 oz. can evaporated milk or half-and-half
In a soup pot, saute onion, celery, and thyme in olive oil until tender. Stir in curry powder, flour and a bit of broth to moisten. Cook til golden and bubbly. Add pumpkin puree, apple, sugar, salt, and broth. Cook 20 minutes over medium heat.
Cool slightly and puree in blender, or puree in the pan with an immersion blender. Stir in evaporated milk and reheat before serving; do not allow it to boil. Lovely with a simple green salad and homemade whole grain rolls.
Ps. You can obtain seeds for Musquee de Provence pumpkin from Seed Saver’s Exchange and Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds.
|left: Musquee de Provence pumpkin; right: Mayo Bule Gourds|