Preparing Pumpkin

The boys are incredibly fond of pumpkin pie and pumpkin bread, especially if it’s home made. I cooked and froze my own pumpkin a couple of years ago and it worked out really well so I just did it again today.

small pumpkinFirst, I bought pie pumpkins. These are smaller than your typical Hallowe’en Jack O’Lantern. Since it’s been such a long time, I went ahead and looked up a few recipe sites and they all said I should cut the pumpkin into 2-inch chunks and boil. Psssssshhhht. Like I’m going to spend a lot of time cutting pumpkin into tiny chunks and then fish them out of boiling water.

pumpkin sliced in half
Instead, I washed them, cut the stems out, and then sliced them in half. I laid them cut side down onto a pan lined with tin foil, then covered with another sheet of tin foil. They went into the oven at 400 degrees for an hour. I checked them occasionally and took them out when they seemed soft and gave under pressure.

tray of cooked pumpkins
After letting the pumpkins cool for just a few minutes, I scooped the pulp out and pureed it in the food processor. From there, it was a simple matter of measuring into 2-cup portions and putting it into quart size freezer bags. I chose 2 cups because that’s the amount required in my pie and bread recipes.

So. Now you know how to prepare your own pumpkin. 🙂 Wanna use it? Here’s a pumpkin bread recipe:

3 Cups Sugar

1 Cup oil

4 eggs, beaten

2 Cups pumpkin

3 1/2 Cups sifted flour

1 tsp. baking powder

2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice (or 1 tsp. each: cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice)

1/2 tsp. cloves (optional)

1 tsp. cinnamon

2/3 Cup water

1 Cup pecans, optional

Combine sugar and oil; add beaten eggs, then add pumpkin. Add sifted dry ingredients and water. Mix; stir in nuts and pour into greased loaf pans. Fill about 1/2 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 55 minutes to 1 hour.

Earnest Parenting: help with kitchen management and making yummy pies.

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