We are in the middle of “All Things Pumpkin” season, and with Thanksgiving coming up, roasting fresh pumpkins is my favorite task to get ready for the big day. Pumpkin pies, breads, muffins, and even desserts and soups are transformed with Freshly Roasted Pumpkin. Now is the season to buy pumpkins cheaply at roadside stands, grocery stores, and farmer’s market. I have found them for as little as 25 cents after Halloween, making them less expensive than the pumpkin in a can at the store!
Freshly Roasted Pumpkin for All Your Fall Recipes
Choosing Right for Freshly Roasted Pumpkin
There are many different varieties of pumpkins, so choosing the right kind is important. Smaller pumpkins, often labeled “Sugar Baby” are the best for Freshly Roasted Pumpkin. They are sweet, as the name would suggest, and they have a fine grain to to the flesh, making it tender when roasted and mashed. Look for pumpkins that are firm, as softer pumpkins can indicate the flesh is past its prime, and even moldy on the inside. Freshly Roasted Pumpkin is best when the pumpkins are fresh, firm, and bright orange. Once you have your pumpkins chosen, wash and dry them, taking care to get in all the ridges. I write from experience that skipping this step can be disastrous to your Freshly Roasted Pumpkin. Next, use a sharp knife or pumpkin saw from a Jack-O-Lantern kit to cut the pumpkins in half. An ice cream scoop or gelato spoon makes fast work of removing the seeds and gooey stuff in the middle. The flesh should be smooth, with all the strings removed. A trip through the oven to roast them, and you’ll have the best Freshly Roasted Pumpkin for all your recipes.
1 Sugar Baby Pumpkin
Heat oven to 400 degrees F.
Wash the outside of the pumpkin and dry.
Remove the stem and cut the pumpkin in half. Scoop out the seeds, leaving a smooth inner cavity.
Place cut side down on a rimmed baking sheet.
Bake in oven 45-60 minutes, until pumpkin is fork-tender.
Remove from oven and allow to cool on the sheet.
Once cool enough to handle, pull the outer skin off. Process in batches in a blender or food processor until flesh is smooth.
Use in all your favorite pumpkin recipes.
Preserving Freshly Roasted Pumpkin
There are two ways to preserve your Freshly Roasted Pumpkin for later use. You can place pre-measured amounts in freezer plastic zippy bags or containers, label them with the date, and freeze them in a deep freeze. This works well, although when you thaw it, you should skim off any extra water that surfaces as part of the freezing process, especially if you are using Freshly Roasted Pumpkin in pie. The other method of preserving Freshly Roasted Pumpkin is by canning it in a pressure canner. I do this at the end of the season with all the sugar baby pumpkins I can find. Roast them as usual, then follow the guide in your pressure cooker for best results. I always can in pint jars as that’s about 2 cups and perfect for almost all of my recipes. Any way you use or preserve Freshly Roasted Pumpkin, it’s an amazing treat in all your recipes.
- 1 Sugar Baby Pumpkin
- Heat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Wash the outside of the pumpkin and dry.
- Remove the stem and cut the pumpkin in half. Scoop out the seeds, leaving a smooth inner cavity.
- Place cut side down on a rimmed baking sheet.
- Bake in oven 45-60 minutes, until pumpkin is fork-tender.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool on the sheet.
- Once cool enough to handle, pull the outer skin off. Process in batches in a blender or food processor until flesh is smooth.
- Use in all your favorite pumpkin recipes.