Monday, October 19, 2009

How To Roast A Pumpkin

I realized that although I have been posting pumpkin recipes all week, I have failed to highlight the most important part....roasting the pumpkin. It is not complicated, but it does take a little time and it can be a challenge to cut the pumpkin in half. Surprisingly I do find that the safest and one of the easiest ways to cut the pumpkin is with a cheap pumpkin carving knife for kids. The knife does not have any sharp edges and can be found in most stores that sell Halloween candy.

Usually the best and easiest pumpkin to work with is a small one, but you can use bigger ones if you don't like wasting the jack o'lantern. A small cooking pumpkin about 5" tall will yield about 3 cups of puree. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. With your knife, cut the pumpkin in half. Carefully take the stock off the top of the pumpkin. Scoop out the stringy pieces and seeds with a strong spoon. In a cookie sheet with sides place the pumpkin halves, open side up. Place about 1/2 cup of water in the pan and put in the oven. The cooking time will depended on how thick the pumpkin is, but it will take the better part of an a hour for most pumpkins. The pumpkin is ready when a fork is able to penetrate the pumpkin without any effort (the pumpkin is very soft). Let the pumpkins cool. Remove the flesh with a spoon by scraping it out, leaving only the skin behind. Voila! fresh pumpkin.