Although many new cooks are intimidated by cooking with them, pumpkins are just large squash. Preparing them for use in recipes is simply a matter of slicing them, scooping out the seeds, and baking them. Once baked, the meat can be scooped out and puréed for use in pies, mousse, trifles, and more.
How To Make Pumpkin Puree
- Small cooking pumpkins as needed
Preheat oven to 350°F. Wash pumpkins and cut off the stem end, then slice in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and pulp, reserving the seeds to roast if desired. Slice each half into quarters and place in a baking pan. Cook for approximately an hour or until meat is soft (time will vary depending on the number of pumpkins you are cooking, so start checking after about 40 minutes). Remove pumpkins and cool. Remove the meat from the skins and purée in batches in a food processor. Use immediately in place of canned pumpkin or freeze in 1-1/2 cup portions.