Prepare Pumpkin Puree

Want to impress your in-laws with your pumpkin pie this Thanksgiving? Your new 'secret' this year is going to be that you used a fresh pumpkin instead of canned pumpkin. Pinch a penny and pick left over pumpkins and make your puree today! This week would be a great week to hit your local farm stand, grocery store or pumpkin patch and pick up pumpkins left over from Halloween. It is my estimation that you will be able to get your pumpkin for at least half price. But don't compromise the great price for a poor pumpkin. For this project you are going to want the smaller pumpkins, smooth skin and good orange color. Leave behind the pumpkins with bruises.

Once you get your pumpkin home wash it well. Cut off the top and scoop out the seeds and pulp as you would as if you were going to carve it for a jack-o-lantern. Now choose your cooking method. I would recommend either roasting or steaming. Directions are as follows:

1. Cut your pumpkin in 1/2.
2. Heat your oven to 350 F.
3. Place your pumpkin cut size down on a cookie sheets with sides or in a baking dish.
4. Cover with foil and roast for 1 hour or until the pumpkin 'meat' is fork tender.
5. Proceed to puree and storage directions.

1. Cut your pumpkin in to pieces small enough to fit in your steamer basket.
2. Steam the pumpkin pieces for 20-30 minutes or until the pumpkin 'meat' is fork tender.
3. Proceed to puree and storage directions.

Puree and Storage
1. Scoop out the pumpkin meat and place in a food processor and process. OR use a blender *safety note* only fill the blender 1/4-1/3 full if the pumpkin is hot.
2. If your puree is too thick for your likeness add a little of the steaming juices (if you steamed) and water if you roasted.
3. Cool completely.
4. Place in freezer bags, freezer safe containers or Food Saver bags.
5. Freeze till Thanksgiving or up to 6 months.

Don't forget to pull our puree out in time to thaw before your make your pies! Be aware that this will not be the same as PUMPKIN PIE FILLING. This will be the same as or better than PUMPKIN.

No comments: