How To Make Your Own Pumpkin Puree

 

Here's our freshly roasted pumpkin.

There are a lot of great recipes featuring pumpkin—everything from soup, to breads, pie and even cookies.  I used to always use the pumpkin I found preprocessed in a can, but then I discovered how easy and simple it is to oven roast your pumpkins and make puree.

 

In tomorrow’s post, I’ll share one of my favorite recipes for pumpkin bread, so for today, I thought I’d share how to roast and prepare your pumpkin.

 

Will need to preheat the oven.

Try a sugar pumpkin for baking.

 

Preparation is easy!  Start by getting a pumpkin at the store or your local farmer’s market.  Not all pumpkins are the same—there are some subtle and not so subtle differences in flavor and texture.  For a good bet, get a “Sugar Pumpkin” (also called Sugar Pie Pumpkin).  Two other good pumpkins for eating are Northern Pie and Cinderella.

 

To roast your pumpkin, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

 

Cover a “rimmed” cookie sheet or baking dish with foil.

 

Now you can cut the pumpkin in half.

Cut around the stem, pull it out and discard it.

Cut the pumpkin in two with a large knife on a cutting board.  Don’t bother trying to cut through the stem unless you’re strong and need to prove something.  Instead, cut around the stem, pull it off and discard.  Now, cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out the insides.  An ice cream scoop works great for this.

 

I like eating pumpkin seeds.

There’s not a lot of seeds in a small pumpkin so roasting them may not be worth it.

If you like, you can separate the seeds, soak them in water and rinse.  You can bake these at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes (or until they start to brown).  Add a little salt for a tasty treat.  They’re delicious on salads or in cereals or all by themselves.

 

 

The foil makes cleanup a snap.

Cook face down on foil.

Once cleaned, place the pumpkin halves face down on the lined cookie sheet.  If you prefer, you can coat the pumpkin first with vegetable or olive oil.

 

Cooking time varies.

Cover with foil and bake.

You’ll also want to cover the pumpkins with foil to help prevent over-drying while cooking.

 

Pop the pan with the pumpkin in the oven and cook it for about 50 to 90 minutes—cooking time varies depending on the size of the pumpkin.  If it’s done and you poke it, the pumpkin should be soft all the way through.

 

Come back tomorrow for a delicious pumpkin bread recipe.

This was easy!

When the pumpkin cools, scoop out the flesh, then mash it with a potato masher or puree it in the food processor.  If it appears too watery, you can drain off the excess moisture.  That’s it!  Use it as called for in your recipe.  You can refrigerate or freeze any leftovers.  Hint: For every pound of fresh pumpkin you can figure you’ll get about 3/4  to 1 cup of pumpkin puree.

 

Check back again tomorrow and we’ll make pumpkin bread.

 
If you enjoyed this post you may want to see these delicious recipes:
Zucchini, Coconut & Carrot Bread

 

 

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