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Pumpkin


nakji
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Pumpkins are turning up every week in my CSA bag. They're small ones - about the size of a smallish squash.

I've cooked them with olive oil, chili, and garlic with a glug of finishing vinegar as a nice pasta sauce for orecchiete.

I've also mixed chunks with spinach and coconut milk for a Malaysian-style curry.

I've braised chunks in dashi and finished them with a sweet sesame sauce.

I've braised chunks in chicken broth and topped them with a thickened minced chicken and ginger sauce.

I've made my favourite squash salad with miso and parmesan.

I'm running out of ideas. Help?

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Can you show us a picture of what you call a pumpkin? I think the term on a general level in the US gets equated with the whole Halloween/Jack -o- lantern business. When my sister in Australia talks about pumpkin she is just referring to any orange fleshed hard winter squash which seems to dovetail with the Wiki definition.

My absolute favorite is Kabocha which is sometimes labeled Japanese pumpkin here.

A prep I have been wanting to try since I first read about it in a Mariana de Blasi book was recently discussed in the topic about the new Dorie Greenspan book here. A delightful and rich stuffed whole pumpkin.

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Pumpkin tempura is my favorite...and I'll second the "pumpkin stuffed with everything good" from Around My French Table. I think the recipe is on epicurious if you search for it.

If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? ~Author Unknown

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If you like chili, you could put cubes of pumpkin in your favorite chili recipe. I make one with all black beans, cocoa powder, and diced pumpkin standing in for the meat (or other winter squash, or sweet potatoes)

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What I get are definitely not carving pumpkins. They're small squash ranging from the size of a softball to the size of an acorn squash. They're orange-skinned, unlike what I would call a squash.

...and I'll second the "pumpkin stuffed with everything good" from Around My French Table. I think the recipe is on epicurious if you search for it.

Here's the recipe. Thanks - stuffing it is an idea I hadn't thought of, mainly because I don't run my oven very often. Rather than the cream and cheese she suggests, though, I had a look at the "bonne idee" at the bottom, where she suggests stuffing it with rice and greens - that sounds like a winner!

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Pumpkin tempura is my favorite...and I'll second the "pumpkin stuffed with everything good" from Around My French Table. I think the recipe is on epicurious if you search for it.

I make something similar--pumpkin fritters. Baked stuffed pumpkin was a cheap meal we used to make when I was in college in the '60s. We stuffed it with a kind of shepherd's pie mixture--seasoned ground beef and mashed potatoes. Pumpkin ravioli are superb with browned butter and sage. Pumpkin soup, of course. Pumpkin fries?

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I've come to the conclusion that what I call fritters are the highest use of any winter squash. One recipe here on my site, but the basic approach (egg and breadcrumbs) can be varied endlessly. I recently tweaked the mix and made winter squash pancakes that were pretty good.

Jim

olive oil + salt

Real Good Food

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Do you have an oven? I've seen a couple of recipes lately for pumpkins with the lid cut off and seeds scooped out like you'd do to carve a jack-o-lantern. The pumpkin gets pre-baked to soften it a bit, and then inside is filled with some kind of stuffing (custardy, cheesy, bready...) and the whole thing gets put back in the oven till the filling is cooked and the pumpkin is done. To serve, scoop out filling with some of the squash from the shell.

Without an oven, you might be able to do something similar on a rack in a steamer large enough to handle said pumpkin.

MelissaH

MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

foodblog1 | kitchen reno | foodblog2

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In Black Kettle, Full Moon Geoffrey Blainey talk about how popular pumpkin was in Australia. I only once ate it outside of a pie when I was growing up in Canada, but when I got here it did seem to be everywhere! Roast pumpking is a common accompaniment to a roast dinner and even chicken takeaway shops sell wedges of it roasted... Even at my local, crappy fruit-fly-infested fruit & veg shop there are usually three kinds of pumpkin on offer.

Pumpkin soup is pretty high on the list here - last winter everyone I know seemed to be having curried pumpkin soup.

I like it in 2cm cubes, tossed with a bit of oil, salt & pepper and roasted until it goes golden at the edges. Delicious as is or with lots of parsley leaves, toasted pinenuts & parmesan tossed through. Leftovers make a great pizza topping (I like it with some feta), or used as a pasta filling like Janeer suggests.

The one time I ate it growing up in non-pie form it was acorn squash cut into quarters and roasted with a knob of butter, nutmeg & brown sugar in each cavity.

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Cut into chunks, toss with olive oil, salt and pepper, then roast them. Combine roasted pumpkin with crumbled pork sausage and serve with ricotta gnocchi. Or by itself.

Edit: spelling

I also enjoy pumpkin and other winter squash with a garlicy pork sausage; of course I am firmly in the sweet with savory camp.

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Almost forgot.

Olney's pumpkin gratin in Simple French Food. Works with kabocha squash btw.

Cut pumpkin or squash into chunks. Olney stipulates 1/4" cubes but I prefer larger pieces, plus my knife skills aren't very good. Combine with chopped garlic, minced parsley, salt and pepper. Sprinkle a little flour and stir to make sure chunks are well-coated. A friend of mine substitutes panko bread crumbs instead of flour. Oil a shallow baking dish or gratin dish. Add squash mixture, drizzle with some more olive oil.

Cook for 2 to 2 1/2 hours in a pre-heated 325 to 350 F oven or until crust has transformed to a tawny golden-brown. Gratin is done when the chunks hold their shape but are near-purée at the touch of a fork.

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My mom once made a thick, slightly creamy stew with sausage, raisins and cranberries that was baked in a pumpkin (a pretty large one; it wasn't a Halloween pumpkin, but a huge pie one, I think) for Thanksgiving. I don't remember exactly what else was in it, but I know it had sage. Mom doesn't remember either (she saw it in a magazine at the doctor's office and wrote it on the back of an envelope which she didn't keep), but she thinks it had Parmesan and torn up bread in it. Maybe there was kale or some other dark green? I mostly remember being enthralled with scooping out my portion of stew with the flesh of the pumpkin. I was 10 or so.

"Life is a combination of magic and pasta." - Frederico Fellini

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I got another pumpkin today.

I'm intrigued by the kaddo bourani recipe, but scared off by the three cups of sugar. Three cups? Also - my pumpkins are quite small - nowhere near three pounds.

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Recently, I bought a rather pumpkin at my farmers' market, and decided to make a soup. I baked it, and ended up with so much pulp that I used the pureed pulp as the base for the soup--not using it as an ingredient, but as the bulk of the soup, flavored with leeks, peppers, cheese and sage. It was incredibly rich and delicious. The recipe is on my website: Squash Soup with Leeks and Peppers

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