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Farmette 1769

by Monica Melograna-Ward

Pumpkin pie is not only popular for Fall’s Thanksgiving, but for the Winter holidays too. In my opinion, the time of year when the light leaves the sky early is always the time for rich, warm pies. So hopefully, this recipe has come in time for you to use it while the festivities and/or weather still invite it.

This Thanksgiving came upon us a bit early, but I managed to get a little, Sugar pumpkin cooked last week in preparation. This was somewhat amazing since my normal style is “habitually late”.

All pumpkins are edible (to the best of my knowledge), but pumpkins sold for cooking have been developed to produce a surprising amount of pulp for their size. They are much sweeter and more flavorful too.

Having unsuccessfully cut it open due to an extremely tough shell, I just placed the raw pumpkin in the oven whole. It was left in at 400 degrees for about an hour. At this point you can just slice the top open like a Jack-o’-lantern and scoop the guts right out.

The seeds in this cooking pumpkin congregated in one spot, making it easy to separate them from the orange flesh. Remember to put aside the seeds. They can be lightly salted, then roasted to make a healthy, crunchy snack.

Pumpkin can be stored in the refrigerator or freezer if not being used immediately. The shell can be dried out for use as decoration.

The pumpkin meat can go straight from your storage container into a food processor/blender or you can mash it with a whisk by hand. I decided to speed things up a bit by processing pumpkin innards and creating pie filling at the same time. You simply throw all of the ingredients in together and mix.

Not being one to follow strict rules, I use measurements as a guide and adjust to my own whims. The following is a list to base your own recipe on;
Fresh pumpkin 20 oz.
3/4 cup brown sugar
3 small/bantam eggs + 1 s/b egg white
4 oz. heavy cream & 8 oz. milk or 12 oz evaporated milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
Spices (about 2 teaspoons all together) – mostly cinnamon plus some nutmeg, ground cloves, ginger and/or all spice.

Pop it in your favorite shell type. I often make cereal or basic flaky pie crust (graham cracker works nicely too). You can decorate with pecans, raisins, and dried cranberries if you feel inspired. Bake in your oven at 350 degrees for about an hour.

There you have it. A  lovely homemade pumpkin pie for your family/friends. Please enjoy the season. May it be comfortable, peaceful and YUMMY for you and yours!

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