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Nov 14, 2006 01:28 AM

Canned pumpkin in Ecuador?

I want to make pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving, but I can't seem to find canned pumpkin here where I am in Quito, Ecuador. Anyone have any information for me?

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  1. I have no idea if such a thing even exists in Ecuador, but if you have that much trouble finding it, look for a variety of potato (which shouldn't be hard there, I imagine) akin to American sweet potatoes. A lot of people can't tell the difference after it's sweetened and spiced, and in any event is quite good in its own right.

    1. There are some stalls at the Santa Clara Market that have some products imported from the US.
      If you know anyone from the US Embassy, the Commissary has things like that but it's only open to Embassy staff.
      The large supermarkets near the neighborhoods where a lot of expats live might stock it or a similar product.
      I lived there years ago and we got creative, planned way ahead so that we brought things from the US or simply did without.

      1. a friend of mine made a similar pie with carrot instead of pumpkin and after it was spiced, nobody knew the difference

        1. I wonder if one of the locally available squashes (calabasa) would work. According to Joy of Cooking the Jack-o-lantern pumpkin isn't all that great for pie.


          1. The Book of Latin American Cooking, Elisabeth Ortiz has an Ecuadorian recipe for 'Torta de Zapallo', pumpkin cake.

            It calls for West Indian pumpkin (calabaza) or any winter squash (e.g. hubbard). It is cooked till tender, then cooked further with cinnamon, sugar, cream, and butter. Then rum, raisins, and greated cheese and eggs are added. It is then baked.

            She also has a version of Ecuadorian Pristinos (fritters) with pumpkin.

            Another Ecuadorian cookbook has a recipe for 'Zapallo de dulce' (pumpkin candy?), in which chunks of this pumpkin are simmered in a syrup made with panela (raw brown sugar), cinnamon, and cloves.

            That book also has recipes for soup that call for either zapallo or zambo (a white squash).

            Squashes originated in this part of the world.


            A web site with these Ortiz recipes

            1 Reply
            1. re: paulj

              i actually went searching for fresh pumpkin or butternut squash earlier today and encountered said zapallo in one grocery store closeby, already cut into pieces for baking. thanks so much for your input!

              ps 'dulce de zapallo' would basically be pumpkin in syrup, rather than candy; they do that here a lot with figs, tomate de arbol, etc.