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Oct 4, 2012 07:21 AM

Canned pumpkin

Anyone know where to find canned pumpkin in Tokyo? I'd rather not resort to ordering it online if I can, and I was sure the international supermarkets like National Azabu would be carrying it by now, but no such luck as of the last few weeks...

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  1. For some reason, from last year (or possibly two years ago) the international supermarkets stopped carrying canned pumpkin. Previously stores such as National Azabu, Denen Supermarket, and Nissin carried the Libby's brand. It was also sold via some Rakuten stores. Stokely's canned pumpkin is now available from a couple of Rakuten stores, but I haven't seen it or any other brands in the supermarkets. Have you tried calling Costco?

    1. Alternatively, you could make your pumpkin pie using the Japanese kabocha pumpkin. This recipe is amazing:

      5 Replies
      1. re: Hiyodori

        Kabocha puree should work in nearly any recipe that calls for canned pumpkin. It might be a little dryer than the canned stuff, but if you've made pumpkin pie before you can easily adjust that.

        1. re: paulj

          Another substitute would be sweet potato.

          1. re: paulj

            Why not apples or blueberries while you're at it?

            You can't make pumpkin pie from sweet potatoes - you end up with sweet-potato pie. Which may be fine in its own right.

            mleco, it may be too late to order online (from FBC at least).

            1. re: Robb S

              The consistency of sweet potato puree and squash puree (pumpkin is just a style of squash, cucurbita moschata or cucurbita maxima) are similar. Most of the flavor in American 'pumpkin pie' comes from the spices, not the puree.

              Libbys uses Dickenson in the butternut family (moschata). Kabocha is in the buttercup family (maxima). Alternatives to Libbys have been discussed in the past on the Home Cooking board in connection with the shortage of that brand several years ago due to poor field conditions in central Illinois.

              By the way, I've read that most of the kabocha consumed in Japan is grown in the USA (or maybe now it's Mexico).

              1. re: Robb S

                Thanks for the suggestions. I'm actually not looking to buy it for pumpkin pie purposes -- I like the taste of good ol' orange pumpkins themselves, which are a little different than kabocha (which is closer to sweet potatoes in taste, I'd say).

                Thanks for the suggestion, Rob -- checked FBC and it looks like they're carrying some still (though not Libby's), so I'll put in an order for those!

        2. Kabocha is really not a substitute for pumpkin because the flavors and texture are so different.