It’s Pumpkin Time

halloween

Honey Mustard Pumpkin Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 small pumpkin (about 10 cups diced)
  • 3 carrots
  • 3/4 tsp. black mustard seed
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup vegetable broth (chicken broth is OK too)
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ginger
  • 3/4 c. powdered skim milk
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. salt

Method

  1. Peel and chop pumpkin and carrots, and simmer in water to cover until tender.
  2. Toward the end of cooking time, heat nonstick skillet over medium heat. When hot, add mustard seeds. Cover pan and keep over medium-high heat until popping sound of mustard seeds begins to die down a bit, then immediately add broth (starting with 1/4 c. and adding more as needed) and onion and reduce heat. Cook and stir until onion is translucent.
  3. Measure spices while the onion is cooking; then stir them into the mixture and allow to cook on low heat for a minute or so until fragrant.
  4. Turn into the pumpkin pot, using a cup or so of the cooking water to rinse the spice pan into the soup pot.
  5. Puree seasoned pumpkin and carrots in their cooking liquid, adding milk, honey and salt to mixture in the processor.
  6. Add salt to taste. Makes 10 cups.

Pumpkin Lasagna

Ingredients

  • 90ml/3fl oz extra virgin olive oil
  • 1kg/2lb 3oz pumpkin, peeled, seeds removed, cubed
  • paprika, to taste
  • freshly grated nutmeg, to taste
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 250g/9oz fresh ricotta cheese
  • 250g/8¾oz green lasagne pasta sheets
  • 150ml/5¼fl oz milk
  • 25g/1oz grated parmesan cheese, or vegetarian parmesan-style grating cheese 

For the béchamel sauce

  • 55g/2oz butter
  • 55g/2oz plain flour
  • 350ml/10½fl oz milk

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-based pan. Add the pumpkin and cook, covered, stirring gently from time to time, until the pumpkin is tender, up to one hour.
  3. Season the pumpkin with plenty of paprika, a grating of nutmeg, freshly ground black pepper and a little salt, to taste.
  4. Add the ricotta cheese while it’s still on the heat. Stir well then remove from the heat. Cover and allow mixture to stand.
  5. For the béchamel sauce, melt the butter in a small saucepan without letting it brown. Add the flour little by little, stirring constantly to prevent lumps from forming.
  6. When the flour has evenly absorbed the butter, continue to cook, stirring, for 4-5 minutes.
  7. Add the 350ml/10½fl oz milk a little at a time, strirring constantly to make a smooth, thick and creamy sauce. Season.
  8. Arrange a layer of lasagne pasta sheets in the bottom of a large ovenproof dish. Spoon over a third of the pumpkin mixture. Lay more pasta sheets over the top, followed by another layer of pumpkin and another layer of pasta, followed by a final layer of the pumpkin mixture. Finish with a layer of lasagne pasta sheets.
  9. Pour the 150ml/5¼fl oz milk over the top and allow it to drain through to all pasta layers.
  10. Bake for ten minutes in the preheated oven, remove and spread the béchamel sauce on top.
  11. Bake for a further 15-20 minutes or until all the milk has been absorbed by the pasta and the lasagne looks cooked and is beginning to go crisp.
  12. Remove from the oven, sprinkle with parmesan and place back in the oven for a few minutes – take care not to burn the pasta or the béchamel on top. Serve immediately.

Pumpkin Cheese Cake

Crumb Crust:

  • 1 cup cookie crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons margarine or butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons sugar

Pumpkin Filling:

  • 2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 15-ounce pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon or 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large eggs

Sour-Cream Topping:

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Crystallized ginger strips, for garnish 

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In 9″ by 3″ springform pan, with fork, stir graham-cracker crumbs, melted margarine or butter, and sugar until moistened. With hand, press mixture onto bottom of pan. Tightly wrap outside of pan with heavy-duty foil to prevent leakage when baking in water bath later. Bake crust 10 minutes. Cool completely in pan on wire rack.
  2. Prepare Pumpkin Filling: In large bowl, with mixer at medium speed, beat cream cheese until smooth; slowly beat in sugar until blended, about 1 minute, scraping bowl often with rubber spatula. With mixer at low speed, beat in pumpkin, sour cream, bourbon or vanilla, cinnamon, allspice, and salt. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition.
  3. Pour pumpkin mixture into crust and place in large roasting pan. Place pan on oven rack. Carefully pour enough boiling water into pan to come 1 inch up side of springform pan. Bake cheesecake 1 hour 10 minutes or until center barely jiggles.
  4. Meanwhile, prepare Sour-Cream Topping: In small bowl, with wire whisk, beat sour cream, sugar, and vanilla until blended. Remove cheesecake from water bath, leaving water bath in oven, and spread sour-cream mixture evenly over top. Return cake to water bath and bake 5 minutes longer.
  5. Remove cheesecake from water bath to wire rack; discard foil. With small knife, loosen cheesecake from side of pan to help prevent cracking during cooling. Cool cheesecake completely. Cover and refrigerate cheesecake at least 6 hours or overnight, until well chilled. Remove side of pan to serve. Garnish with crystallized ginger.