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Cooking Whole Pumpkins

Let’s start off with large pumpkins are for carving jack ‘o lanterns and medium sized sugar pumpkins are for cooking.  There are many methods to cooking fresh pumpkin but after years of doing of it I find baking the whole pumpkin is the easiest method.

Cooking Whole Pumpkins

Preheat oven to 350˚.  Line a baking sheet with tin foil.  Wash pumpkin(s) thoroughly to remove all dirt and dry.  Place pumpkin(s) on prepared baking sheet and cook for 1 hour or until cooked.  You will know it is done when the skin of the pumpkin(s) has darkened and the flesh inside is soft.  I just push on the skin with my finger but you can use a fork.

Remove baking sheet from oven and let pumpkin(s) cool to room temperature.  Once cooled, you can peel the skin right off the flesh of the pumpkin.  It is real easy.

Now take a spoon and cut into the flesh of the pumpkin exposing the seeds and strings of the pumpkin.  Scrape the seeds and strings off the flesh and put the cooked flesh of the pumpkin into a food processor.  Process the pumpkin until smooth.  Store pureed pumpkin in 1 cup Tupperware containers and freeze until ready to use.

See Pumpkin Tortellini Alfredo, Pumpkin Bread, or Pilgrim Pies for recipes using the pureed pumpkin.

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