How to Cook a Pumpkin in a Crockpot
October 30th, 2011
The “traditional” method is to cut the pumpkin open and roast it in the oven. But if your oven happens to be full of pumpkin spice scones
or pumpkin chocolate chip muffins
(as mine has been, of late), you can actually cook a pumpkin in a crock pot, too.
First, cut the pumpkin in half. Easier said than done, I know. I used a bread knife because it was serrated and big. Scrape out all the insides and seeds (feel free to cook those, though I’m not a fan of pumpkin seeds). Cut your pumpkin into chunks that will fit in your crock pot. Add enough water to cover the bottom of the pot and come up about 3/4 of an inch on the sides. Cover and cook on high for four hours.
Then you scrape the pumpkin flesh off the rind and puree it in a food processor. Whenever you cook and squish pumpkin (though especially in the crock pot), it’s worth draining it through a cheesecloth because it tends to get a bit watery. And, voila! Pumpkin puree, ready to bake with.
I actually made a spreadsheet of pumpkin recipes. Don’t laugh. It’s good sense! I scoured all my cookbooks for pumpkin dishes that looked yummy — everything from pumpkin waffles to pumpkin lentil soup to pumpkin bars — then put the cookbook and page number (or web address for the online recipes I’ve found lately) in the spreadsheet.
I also noted any unusual ingredients that I might not have readily available. Most pumpkin baking calls for pretty standard ingredients but if you’re going to make pumpkin bars, for example, you need to be sure you have cream cheese on hand. Pumpkin waffles require a container of vanilla yogurt. That sort of thing.
Now, when I get a pumpkin-cooking yen, I can just consult my spreadsheet to find a good recipe and leap into action. I’m planning to try pumpkin fudge this evening…
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