Monday, November 18, 2013

Recipe: Can-Free Pumpkin Puree

Thanksgiving season is one of the most difficult times for an American abroad. Traditional foods that are easy to find and inexpensive back home are non existent or very expensive abroad. I have been lucky enough to make Thanksgiving work all three years I’ve been in Spain (here is the story about my first year).

Pumpkin is one of my favorite foods to use during this time of the year. I love making pumpkin breads, sweets, soups and pies of course! The problem with this in Spain, is that canned pumpkin doesn’t exist. However, pumpkin puree is INCREDIBLY easy to make.

This year, I was lucky enough to get my hands on a real pumpkin! But, this recipe (and all recipes calling for pumpkin puree) can be made with butternut squash. In fact, most canned pumpkin brands are actually made from butternut squash!

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My pumpkin

Ingredients:

1 pie pumpkin* or butternut squash
*Normal carving pumpkins (the big ones) are not good for this, you should look for the small ones that come with a sticker saying pie pumpkin or sweet pumpkin.

Directions:
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit or 200 degrees Celsius
  • Cut the pumpkin or squash in half
  • Clean out the seeds and pulp (Save the seeds to roast if you want!)
  • Put the Pumpkin or Squash skin side up on the baking sheet
  • Bake for 45-60 minutes, depending on the size. It is done with the meat can easily be smashed with a fork
  • Scoop out the meat and throw away the skins
The puree can be kept in the fridge for a few days or in the freezer for a month.

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All clean and ready for the oven
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Now you are ready to use your homemade puree for whatever recipe you want! See, so much easier than using the can! Stay tuned for a Pumpkin Pie recipe!

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All finished and smelling delicious!

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Nice and squishy. Ready for any recipe!