My Own “Winter Luxury”

The pumpkins on the back porch have been bothering me since…October.  I  finally took an afternoon to make pumpkin puree.  I enjoy growing pie pumpkins but the question is what to do with them.

These were the largest pumpkins I grew this year.

My answer to the pumpkin question is to make puree. I make pies and cookies with the puree.  I am also thinking about making bread after the holidays.

To make the puree, cut the pumpkin in half.  Clean out all the seeds and any of the stringy stuff inside.  Grease a cookie sheet. Set the oven to 325 or 350.

The pumpkins hot out of the oven

In these pictures I do not use tin foil to cover the pumpkin because I like some of the caramelized pumpkin.  If you use tin foil to cover the top of the pumpkins while they bake they do not get a nice crusty brown.  I bake the pumpkins at 350 or 325 until they are soft, these took about an hour.  They should be fork soft through out the entire pumpkin.

Then scoop out all the yummy pumpkin goodness.

The pumpkin scooped out

This variety of pumpkin, Winter Luxury, scoops out very smooth with very few “strings” and I think it could be used in recipes as is.  However, I want to make sure it’s really smooth so I put it into the my food mill.  This food mill has removable blades, and I use the smallest holes for this job.

The food mill smooths out any "strings"

Then you have a wonderful bowl of pumpkin puree.

This is wonderful bowl of puree is from one pie pumpkin

I scoop it into plastic bags for freezing.  I have a couple of cookie recipes we enjoy so I scoop the recipe amount into the freezer bag, when I make the recipe I thaw out a bag and empty the contents of the bag.  These pumpkins make an excellent pie, I am going to try making a pie or two and freezing them.

I know that before Thanksgiving canned pumpkin was difficult to find for some.  Now I see it on sale at the markets.  After using fresh pumpkin last year I did not worry about the pumpkin shortage because I had some on the back porch.  The joys of growing your own food.

Do you grow pumpkins?  What is your favorite pumpkin recipe?

Enjoy this season, learn from last season, and look forward to next season.

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6 responses to “My Own “Winter Luxury”

  1. I have never grown my own pumpkins, so I have never done this. But, I can imagine how much better those pies and cookies are with fresh pumpkin! Great info. If I decide to grow pumpkins, I now know what to do with them!

  2. I don’t know what kind of pumpkins I have (bought at a local farm stand). They’re traditional Halloween pumpkins. Would they work for eating?

  3. Holleygarden – if you do decide to grow pumpkins I suggest you pick a variety that will fit in your growing space. I had to scale down my pumpkin growing because last year they nearly took over the yard.

    Amanda – I have not tried traditional Halloween pumpkins before. I have one I am going to try this year. I think pie pumpkins tend to be sweeter because they are smaller, and maybe more “string-eryer”. I would try using it. I would use the blender to puree it. Then taste test it for sweetness. A little brown sugar will probably sweeten it up.

  4. We seldom get Pumpkins here. You only see them in the shops at Halloween time. Usually we prefer Butternut Squash and similar types (which I have grown once or twice). I love Butternut roasted in the oven, greased with olive oil and smothered in black pepper, served alongside roast pork. It also makes a wonderful soup. We had some cubed roasted butternut in a Macaroni cheese yesterday, which was also delicious.

    • Thanks for reading mark. My family enjoys squash, however I am not a huge fan. I enjoy pumpkin pie, but I don’t run to it. Is there a reason you don’t have pumpkins where you are? Do the conditions prohibit them? I would be surprised if they did because you grow squash. Just curious, thanks for reading and commenting.

  5. Nicely done! I’ve got several squash/pumpkins than need processing. I think follow your lead and use the food mill.

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