Do not fear the Pumpkin: Just Roast it!

A giagantic pumpkin has been staring at me from my dining room table since Wednesday.  Its a little daunting.  I’ve been thinking of things to do with it, but really the recipes I’m interested in making all call for pumpkin puree.  So I decided to roast it.

Here are two ways to roast a pumpkin:

Method 1: Use this method if you want pumpkin puree to use in another recipe.

1.  Pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees.
2.  Cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out the stringy insides and seeds with a spoon.  Cut again into quarters so you have a total of 4 pieces.  You can separate out the seeds and roast them later.
3.  Rub the flesh of the pumpkin with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Place each quarter flesh side up on an oiled cookie sheet.
4.  Place in the oven and roast until the flesh is tender – about 20-30 minutes.
5.  When tender, take the pumpkin out of the oven and let it cool until you can handle it with bare hands.
6.  Scoop the tender flesh into a large bowl.  You can keep it in the fridge for a day or two or you can freeze it if you won’t be using it right away.  This can be used for making anything that calls for pumpkin puree like pies or soups.

Method 2: You can use this method if you don’t necessarily want puree, if you’d like to serve it in pretty, whole chunks, or if you’d like to add extra a coating of herbs or spices to the pumpkin squares.

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
2.  Cut the pumpkin into quarters and scoop out the stringy insides and seeds.
3.  Use a vegetable peeler or pairing knife to remove the thin skin on the outside of the pumpkin.
4.  Cut into 1″ chunks.  Place the chunks into a ziplock bag with about 2 tbsp of olive oil, salt and pepper, and whatever herb you’d like.  A sure bet for a meal side dish would be thyme.  Shake the bag to coat all pieces then  spread on an oiled cookie sheet.
5.  Roast until tender and slightly browned – about 20 minutes.
6.  Remove from the oven and serve or you can place the chunks in a bowl and use an emersion blender to puree.

6 responses to “Do not fear the Pumpkin: Just Roast it!

  1. You can also use a vegetable peeler and peel the outside skin before roasting. Then you can skip the scooping step. 😉

    • In my case, the skin was so hard to peel. It was much harder than it looked. One of our members said that boiling the pumpkin for several minutes would help the vegetable peeler go through the skin like butter. I’ll have to try next time.

  2. Thanks for the tips! I was just thinking, I have no idea how to cook a pumpkin! I’ve used only canned pumpkin for my baking/cooking. This is great and the photos are helpful too! Thanks for all you do!

  3. Pingback: Roasted Pumpkin Bisque | HomeGrown Organics: Gainesville

  4. I’m roasting with method #2, using fresh rosemary. 🙂 It should be good.

  5. Pingback: Pumpkin Harvest Loaf | HomeGrown Organics: Gainesville

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