Dec. 14, 2013 11:15 pm
Updated: Dec. 17, 2013 8:17 am
It was a post or two ago, that I chatted about friend Deni providing me with what she called a "pie pumpkin." I have since learned that they are also called New England Pie, or Small Sugar pumpkins. Now, I'd never heard of any of these, nor can I say
that I've ever seen one in a store...
Today, I decided that I'd best do something with it, before it rotted on the counter, so I cruised the web to see just how to prepare it to make puree. Not being totally ignorant, I was aware that this would need to be cooked first, but I was not quite sure
how to go about doing that simple task.
As with most winter squash, I found the usual directions to cut in half, clean out seeds and pulp, place cut side down on a baking sheet and bake in a moderate oven. Deni, however, had told me that her sister puts these small pumpkins in her slow cooker...
I was leaning toward micro-cooking it, as I've done for years with acorn squash, and only recently with a butternut. It was here at allrecipes that I found microwave directions, though the cooking time seemed long to me, as it directed 15 minutes on high
power. For an acorn, I usually cook only a few minutes!
What could I lose, I asked myself... I believe the pumpkin cost me all of 25 cents, so I bit the bullet and stabbed it a dozen times with a sharp tipped steak knife, placed it on a paper towel covered plate, and into the micro. Setting the time for 10 minutes,
not the 15 that was suggested, I pushed the "start" button, and watched as the pumpkin revolved on the turntable. After about 2 minutes, it began to rock occasionally, so I opened the door, and stabbed a couple more times with the knife, presuming that it
was steam building up inside that was causing the rocking motion. (I feared that the darn thing would explode within the micro!)
By the end of the 10 minute cycle, the pumpkin pierced easily with the knife, though directions suggested stabbing with a fork to test it. I removed the plate setting it on a hot pad to begin to cool. It was still rather warm to the touch when I cut it in
half and began scooping out the seeds and pulp. It cleaned out very easily, and the skin had begun to pull away from the meat at the bottom. How cool is that?
I was running out of time, as I had to leave for a while, so I scooped out all of the meat placing it into a zipper bag, squeezed out the air, and plopped it into the freezer with a note... "Puree before using." I have every intention of turning this into
a pie for Christmas... unless I make it and we eat it all first, that is! I'm also intending to add the remaining puree from the can that I opened some days ago, unless it begins to mold in the frige first... It too will end up in the freezer unless I use
it all first. Sounds like a pie to me - I've already made two batches of pumpkin cookies from the canned pumkin, and still have half left. I must also use my heavy cream soon, as it's been in the frige for a while... I hear ice cream rather than whipped... warm
pie with homemade ice cream sure sounds like a winner to me!
Thus, "pie pumpkin" is yet another first for CRAZYCOOK, and off I go, heading for the big holiday of my year... I've much baking left to do for the neighbors. Years past, I've bought gift bags, but this year I've collected buckets from cheap store
bought ice cream. All they need is a little decor on the lids and goodies inside - I think they'll make wonderful gifts.
Happy (CRAZY) Holidays to all!