Every year we always have good intentions to harvest some of the beautiful pumpkins grown in our field. We chat at our family dinners about which kinds of pumpkins we want to try, what recipes we’ll make and how we’ll do it… but every year, time seems to slip away from us and yet another year goes by without pumpkin puree in our freezers. Not.this.year.
This year we decided to prepare some pumpkin puree from our CINDERELLA PUMPKINS. Cinderella pumpkins are most notably known for their striking resemblance to the pumpkin carriage in the fairytale of Cinderella. They have a redish / orange exterior and are quite flat compared to other perfectly round pumpkin varieties. They have a sweet, rich flavour and a creamy texture… absolutely perfect for baking recipes.
1. Start by washing your pumpkin. Preheat your oven to 350 C.
2. Cut your pumpkin either in half diagonally or as I’ve done. I chose to cut mine in half and then diagonally because of the size of my pumpkin… it was huge!
3. Scoop out all of the seeds and insides of your pumpkin. Don’t forget to separate all of your seeds to roast later for a snack!
4. Place your pumpkin cut-side down on a baking sheet. Add a little bit of water to the bottom of your pan and pop it into the oven. Baking time will depend on the size of your pumpkin but it should take approximately an hour (I ended up baking mine longer than that). Check on the pumpkin by poking a fork into the skin and the flesh of the pumpkin – both should be soft when it’s ready.
5. Once it’s ready, take it out of the oven and let it cool slightly. Turn over your pumpkin halves and scoop out all of that delicious pumpkin.
6. **Strain your pumpkin** I missed this step. You’ll want to place your pumpkin in a strainer over a bowl in order to remove all of the excess water out. Your pumpkin should be fairly smooth. Place your pumpkin into a food processor and blend until smooth.
7. Scoop 1 cup portions of your pumpkin into ziploc bags and place in the freezer flat. I ended up with 15 cups of pumpkin puree (although I forgot to strain it). Place pumpkin portions into larger freezer bags and VOILA!
8. If you want a tasty treat then roast your pumpkin seeds. Add a little bit of olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and some cayenne pepper and roast until lightly browned.
Bon appetit! Pumpkin pie, here we come!