I hope everyone had a nice Columbus Day weekend :) My family and I spent it just relaxing around the house...being lazy. I rounded up my kids once again and decided that I would teach them how to make our own homemade pumpkin puree. Honestly, I had no clue how simple and easy it was to make your own pumpkin puree. But now that I know, I will never go back to using canned pumpkin :)
I had heard through a little birdie that Libby's (not me...but the factory that produces those wonderful cans of pumpkin and pumpkin pie filling) was having a shortage on canned pumpkin. I'm not sure how true that rumor is because I ended up purchasing 4 big cans of pumpkin from the store the other day. Alas, I still wanted to learn how to make my own because...well...I love making anything homemade. Needless to say, we have pumpkin coming out from everywhere now in our house!
I also want to thank my friend, Susan, for telling me how she makes her own pumpkin. I took Susan's advice, followed the instructions from a post of another well known cooking blog, and before I knew it our own pumpkin puree was done :)
Take notes because once you see how super easy this is, you may never want to go back to purchasing canned pumpkin again :)
Step 1: We start with 2 regular sized baking pumpkins. I found these at our local grocery store in the produce section. Do not use the huge pumpkins in the stores. The one's that you need are called "sugar" pumpkins or "pie pumpkins" and they are usually the little one's that are on display.
Step 2: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place the pumpkins in a casserole dish and roast them for 35-40 minutes. This is to soften up that rough outer layer so it will be easier to cut. When it comes out of the oven, it should have a little brown tint to them and come out shining like a brand new penny. Let them cool.
Step 3: After they have cooled, rip out the stem and cut the pumpkin in half.
Step 4: Scoop out the yucky stringy stuff and seeds. If you like toasted or roasted pumpkin seeds, you can save them for that :) Cut the hollow and gutted pumpkin halves into fourths and place them on a baking sheet greased with cooking spray. Be sure to place pieces cut side down. Bake at 350 degrees for 50-60 minutes.
Step 5: Once out of the oven, let them cool. You can tell if they're done by sticking a fork in them. If the fork goes through without any difficulty, then they are done. The bottoms should be mushy and soft. Once cooled, scoop out the mushy part of each piece and collect it in a bowl.
Step 6: After all the pumpkin is collected in bowl, use a food processor, potato masher, or even a fork to break up the big chunks and get that perfect mashed consistency. If the pumpkin looks to thick, you can add 1/4 cup water to the bowl to thin it out.
Place in ziplock bags and freeze. I froze mine in 2 cup measurements for baking purposes.
Yummm! I can't wait to start using this in the recipes I have planned to make :)
For more information on making your own pumpkin puree, click here Our Best Bites-Homemade Pumpkin