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Oct 20, 2009 06:01 AM

Your Favorite Pumpkin Recipe

I just bought my first can of pumpkin puree and my first sugar pumpkin. I love pumpkin (especially in sweet forms, but I enjoy savory variations as well) but have yet to make any pumpkin recipes at home since I am the only one at home that enjoys pumpkin in any form. With pumpkin season upon us, what are you making?

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  1. I make a number of items (bread, ravioli, pumpkin and apple soup) providing I have the right pumpkin. Perhaps your sugar pumpkin and my find are the same thing. Little did I know until five years ago that the large, bright orange variety preferred for carving faces is far from the best eating pumpkin. Look for the Fairy Tale a.k.a. Cinderella pumpkin (dull orange-bronze shell with large "cleavages" - looks like it should be drawn by eight tiny horses) for an amazing bright orange flesh inside that is as sweet or sweeter than any squash. A simple buttered puree adds a splash of vibrant color to the dinner plate and its uses are endless. Since this revelation, I've been much more enthusiastic about exploring pumpkindom. Is this the one you bought?


    3 Replies
    1. re: Chefpaulo

      During my trip to Whole Paycheck, I saw a display of "baking pumpkins" which were Sugar Pumpkins and just couldn't resist. I think Sugar Pumpkins are smaller and not as "cleaved" as Cinderella Pumpkins.

      1. re: TampaAurora

        I just saw Cinderella pumpkins at Trader Joes, they were so cute I never would have guessed they were good for baking too. Also got some pumpkin butter and cranberry apple butter. No one else eats pumpkin (except pumpkin pie) nor cranberry (except Ocean Spray) so it's all mine, mine, mine! Although suspicious of anything orange this time of year, I frequently trick them into having somepumpkin or sweet potato or carrots by calling the dish "African" soup, or "Szechuan" soup and they don't ask so I don't tell.

        1. re: TampaAurora

          Cinderella pumpkins are what the French call Potiron -- and they make ROCKIN' pumpkin pies -- cut it into big chunks, toss it in a roasting pan with some water, and bake at 375F for 1-1/2 -2 hours -- until it's very soft.

          Scrape the flesh off of the rind and hit it with a stick blender to puree. Velvety texture and awesome flavor -- makes the bet pies ever.

          Oh yeah -- the French make a veloute (cream soup) from it...

      2. -pumpkin cranberry bread
        - pumpkin coconut pie
        - pumpkin ravioli (it'll be my first time with that)
        - penne with pumpkin cream sauce

        1. What a great topic! I actually own THREE cookbooks devoted to pumpkins (well, one is both pumpkin and zucchini recipes). One of my favorite savory dishes to make is a South American dish of pumpkin, corn, and white beans. Stews and soups are good as well.
          As for sweet dishes, I make a lot of pumpkin cornbread, with a little ginger in it, pumpkin bars (like pie but in bar form with just a bottom crust), and pumpkin souffle. This year I plan on trying my hand at pumpkin ice cream as well.
          When I get home tonight I'm going to look through my pumpkin cookbooks and get a little more inspiration! yum.

          1 Reply
          1. re: rds246

            Would you mind giving a bit more detail about the pumpkin, corn, and white bean dish? That sounds really good.

          2. Definitely pumpkin bread pudding. Amazing with homemade cinnamon ice cream. Here's the pudding:

            -1 1/2 cups whole milk (Or 1 cup heavy cream plus 1/2 cup whole milk)
            -3/4 cup canned solid-pack pumpkin
            -1/2 cup sugar
            -2 large eggs plus 1 yolk
            -1/2 teaspoon salt
            -1 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
            -5 cups cubed day-old baguette or crusty bread
            -3/4 stick butter

            Preheat oven to 350F. Put the butter in your intended baking pan (two 8-in. rounds or a 9×9-in. pan work well, but a 13×9-in. might do in a pinch) and stick in the oven to melt while it preheats. Remove from oven.

            1. Toss the bread cubes with the melted butter, dividing evenly between the two pans if you are using more than one.

            2. In a large bowl, whisk together all the remaining ingredients.

            3. Pour liquid evenly over the bread cubes. Toss to coat.

            4. Bake 25-30 min. or until custard is set.


            9 Replies
            1. re: ChristinaMason

              This looks awesome!! I want to make it tonight! Have you ever tried it with almond breeze or soymilk?

              1. re: cheesecake17

                You know, I haven't, but I imagine it would be fine. Maybe not as rich, but the eggs help there. Maybe you could add a little liquid coffee mate or something to get the right mouthfeel? Sounds kinda gross...sorry about that!

                Let me know how it turns out!

                1. re: ChristinaMason

                  I have a piece of a baguette, so maybe I'll try to halve the recipe. I'll let you knw if I try it

              2. re: ChristinaMason

                Any reason why I shouldn't call that Pumpkin Custard French Toast Casserole and serve it for holiday brunch? I could add toasted pecans or chopped craisins.

                1. re: BeaN

                  Yum yum and yum. Call it whatever, just be sure to serve it. I did it the past two years for Thanksgiving and now it's part of the rotation. Candied pecans would be awesome.

                2. re: ChristinaMason

                  I know this is an old post, but wondering--I have some day-old challah bread. Would this work, or does it need something sturdier?

                  1. re: mom22tots

                    Day-old challah works great for bread puddung - it will give you more of a proper British pudding texture when all is said and done, rather than the stiffer Americanized version of bread pudding you often get in restaurants here. If you prefer the chewier American version, you can always cut back the liquid added a bit - but just a bit. I use a different recipe than the one above, but I'd say you could cut the extra yolk and maybe use a tbs less milk if you want it stiffer (though cutting egg white would accomplish the task a little better than the yolk, it's a lot easier to lose a yolk than lose half an egg white...)

                3. Soup! I found this recipe a couple of years ago, it's awesome and a fall/winter staple in our thermoses for lunch.

                  2 pounds ground beef
                  1/2 cup chopped onion
                  Clove of minced garlic
                  1 lb sliced fresh mushrooms
                  1 can Libby's pumpkin puree or 2 cups fresh pumpkin puree (don't use the sugar pumpkin)
                  4 cups meat broth (chicken or beef)
                  1/2 cup heavy cream
                  1/2 cup white wine (I use one of the little single bottles)
                  Salt and pepper to taste

                  Brown the meat, onion, mushrooms and garlic, drain fat. Add pumpkin and blend in before adding the broth and seasoning, cover and simmer for half an hour. Add wine and cream and simmer another fifteen minutes. You can substitute crumbled bulk Italian sausage for some or all of the ground beef.