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Showing posts with label pumpkin pie. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pumpkin pie. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Maple Rosedale Pumpkin Pie

 


Maple Rosedale Pumpkin Pie

yields 1 9" pie

  • 15 oz roasted squash puree
    • Mine was from my special Rosedale pumpkin!
  • 4 oz (a generous half cup) granulated sugar
  • 3 oz (about 1/3 cup) grade A maple syrup
  • 3 eggs, ideally organic
  • 1/2 c almond milk
  • 10 coriander seeds or 1/2 tsp dried coriander
  • 1 cinnamon stick or 1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 4 spicebush berries, dried
    • If you can't find these, use 2 allspice berries plus 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 Chinese long peppercorn 
  • 1/2 tsp good vanilla extract
    • Check out my Partners page for good resources!
  • A fat pinch of kosher salt
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees and prepare a sheet pan lined with either aluminum foil or a Silpat mat. Roll out your favorite pie crust into a glass pie dish (I prefer glass because I can see the bottom and make sure it's all cooked) and decorate as you like. I have these adorable cookie cutters that resemble leaves, and one of them looks like a pine cone. Since I tragically couldn't find my maple leaf cutter, this was the perfect alternative! All I did was let them hang out on the cool marble slab until I was ready to use them. I didn't feel the need to refrigerate the pie piece cut-outs since this pie is so quick to put together. 

Combine your hard spices into a spice grinder and blitz until wholly powdered. You can also use a coffee grinder, in a pinch! I much prefer to use whole spices in this way, as they store much better.  Then add about 2 Tbsp of the sugar and blitz together with the spices. This really helps perfume the sugar with the spices and lends more flavor to your pie!

Whisk together the squash puree with the sugars, maple syrup, and spices until well-combined. Next, mix in the eggs, one at a time, until completely combined. Add in all the rest of the ingredients and taste. If it needs a bit more cinnamon or you'd like to add a dash of cardamom or clove, that's perfectly fine. This is your pie, after all!

Once everything is combined and well-mixed, pour your mixture into your prepared crust. If you've chosen to decorate your pie with leaf or pinecone cutouts, like me, now is the time to attach them with egg wash to the sides and let the other half float along the custard top. Please remember that this is, in fact, a custard pie so I don't recommend a lattice top to finish. Go and have some fun with the outer crust, instead!

Bake at 325 for 3(three) twenty-minute intervals in which the pie is rotated gently in the oven. The pie sets up beautifully when baked low-and-slow, so be sure to not try to rush it! Now that I have your attention, and while the pie bakes and cools, let's talk a bit about the brand new Rosedale Pumpkin and the complicated world of cross-pollination. 

Everyone, meet the Rosedale Pumpkin Squash!

When you grow your own produce, either in a small Victory garden or a decent-sized homestead, there's always the possibility of cross-pollination. While there are many ways to avoid it, there is a not-insignificant amount of us gardeners that simply allow the thing to happen and see what comes of it. I noticed this strange thing growing on one of my squash plants. I got several small butternut squashes from my vines this year, but nothing was quite as big as this weird little monster. It was clear that the butternut and acorn squash had cross-pollinated, and while I could have simply cut it off and let the plant continue to make more...I was frankly too curious to not let it grow. I began taking pictures of it and telling my friends about it. We racked our brains trying to come up with a name for the squash, and it never came...I settled on 'Rosedale" squash since I live in Rosedale and that's where it grew. When I harvested it on the morning of Halloween eve and told my husband about the mysterious squash, he groggily looked at the green monstrosity and said: "So, what, it's like a ... buttercorn?"

OH, MY GOURD.

Oh, come on! We've been trying so hard to come up with a cool name and you just pull that out of the air?! Jerk. 

I actually did a live opening of this thing on Instagram. 

I've decided to call it a pumpkin because of the stem, which is woody and quite stiff once it was dried! I was so curious as to what this tasted like. I documented everything about its cooking. It had a gorgeous bright-orange flesh when cut into that quickly beaded up with drops of diamond-like dew. I roasted it slowly at 300 degrees for about 4 hours with some canola oil so it wouldn't dry out. I didn't add salt or sugar, since I wanted to taste the real thing. Sadly? It didn't taste like buttered corn, so I chose to not name it 'buttercorn.' It tasted incredibly mild, and had a texture almost akin to spaghetti squash. It had plenty of moisture in it, still, so I don't know if this wall of text is masking my disappointment well enough at the lack of distinct flavor of my little green monster. 

Oh well. I still stand by my decision to save all of the seeds for next year's planting! Who knows if the seed will be viable or not? I simply know that I'll be starting them all in seed trays and letting them hang out in the garage by the window to keep them warm and safe until they're ready to be transplanted outdoors. Maybe the second generation will be better? 

This method can be used to roast any winter squash for the sake of preserving the puree over the long winter. I highly recommend doing this, if you don't have access to a cellar (or basement) that's pest-free and is relatively climate-controlled. My deep freezer will likely see a good portion of many bags of winter squash puree this season, even though I have a good cellar that will keep all of my produce fresh over winter. These are the things you really need to think about with a global pandemic going on, and the numbers getting worse. 

I know we're all sick of hearing about Covid-19, but with everything escalating and with hospitals getting overwhelmed again, it would be irresponsible to ignore it and not talk about it. I encourage all of you to contact local farms and see what kind of winter squash they're growing and if they're willing to sell you any or do a trade for them for whatever you may be able and willing to give. I'm fortunate to have partnerships with awesome farmers here in Kansas City that have paid me in produce for doing PR work for them. There are also many farmers markets out there that are participating in a Covid relief program to get good seasonal produce to families that really need them. 



And please, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, WEAR A DAMN MASK.

Squash - winter squash particularly - are incredibly nutrient-dense. Usually, quite high in fiber, they're a great source of calcium, potassium, magnesium, and vitamin C. Pumpkin and squash are oddly acidic, so that means they're great at encouraging white blood cells to get amped up and protect you against disease this fall and winter. Who doesn't need that? 

Most eastern medicine - seen specifically in Chinese and Ayurvedic principles - have what are known as warming and cooling foods. There's a lot that could be said about this, but all you need to know right this moment is that a "warming food" is based on the internal nature of the food product. You should have nothing but warming foods if you are recovering from an illness or surgery. Foods like chicken, chestnuts, fresh ginger, and - you guessed it - pumpkin or squash are quite warming. It's no wonder we like it in our baked goods, the most-warming kind of food you can usually have! So, really, eating a whole pumpkin pie could be good for you...

When your pie is set to room temperature, you can cut and serve immediately, but I think it's better to chill it for a couple of hours first, just to help set the custard. After that, I do suggest letting the pie come up to room temperature to serve it. This is because the squash and spices are quite fragrant, and cold temperature dulls the beautiful aromas. This is also because eating cold foods can suppress your immune system so it's better to just let stuff be at least room temperature before you eat it. 

If you're curious about more warming and cooling foods, I invite you to have some fun researching it on your own and making informed decisions on it, all with a grain of salt! My mom, a Filipinx woman, always made sure to put extra ginger in her chicken soup whenever I got sick, and I will say it seemed to kick whatever crud I was experiencing out of my lungs. 

I hope you've enjoyed this recipe! Happy cooking and happy eating!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Pumpkin Soup(Snuggle up and eat it)

Kansas City, the City of Fountains, is also known as the Paris of the Plains.
As a transplant, I thought this was a bit pretentious. But I’ve lived here for four years now, and I must say that it does have certain Parisian qualities. For example, the snobbery of the different kinds of barbecue. The Plaza may as well be the Midwestern Champs-Elysees. There’s a coffee shop/cafe on just about every corner, and the culture of art and food is thriving like no other. It really is a fantastic city. And this fantastic city is proud of its strong agricultural roots. Speaking of agriculture, let’s talk about pumpkins.
The Kansas City Pumpkin Patch Guide is a great place to check out where to take your kids, or your friends, or your date. I mean, come on. Taking your lady to the pumpkin patch where you go pick out pumpkins, take pictures, and get messy carving them together?
Come on, nobody else thinks that would be totally romantic? Hello? Bueller?
But if you don’t want to go all the way out to the pumpkin patch, many grocery stores are carrying pumpkins, and not just the Jack-o-Lantern varieties anymore…
Also slightly hilarious.
These are called Lunch Lady Gourds. Slightly offensive to lunch ladies everywhere.
I live in Westwood Hills, a great little area south of the river, and the closest store to me is the Price Chopper in Roeland Park(and most others), which has an amazing selection of pumpkins sitting right outside the store. These Lunch Lady Gourds(seen above) are warty and fun for decoration, but I have never used them for cooking before. The ones I have used for cooking, however, are just as fun to look at as they are to eat. And the whole point of pumpkins is, pretty much, to eat them. They’re vegetables! They’re squash! Let’s eat!
Citing your pictures is an excellent practice, children. We should all do so!
Courtesy of DelightfulDelicacies.Blogspot.com!
This variety is called the Australian Blue. It’s more of a grayish-green, but these are fantastic as decorations. Imagine a ghostly, goulish gray theme for your Halloween party…a table set with lacy antique linens and these suckers, all aglow. But the point is you can also keep them out on your front porch for decoration. And what you don’t want to use, you can eat. Because the weather in Kansas City right now is perfect for storing these veggies for later consumption. Or just until you’re ready to carve them. Because who wants to be that house with just the boring old Jack-o-Lantern pumpkins on the front door? Just imagine how great the more colorful varieties will look, all carved and lit up at night!
All kept nicely cool on my porch!
From top going clockwise: One Too Many Squash(the speckled squash), Long Island Cheese Pumpkin(the pretty white squash), Rumbo Squash(the squashed-squash)
The One Too Many Squash and the Rumbo Squash are both available to buy right now, and some of the Price Choppers in Kansas City are using locally grown pumpkins from right around this area.The Long Island Cheese pumpkin is not, however, because that’s one that I grew myself. I’ve wanted a pumpkin patch since I was a little girl, and that was the pumpkin of my choosing! How do they taste? Well, it just so happens that I’ve made my favorite vegetarian recipe using the Rumbo Squash: Pumpkin Soup.
Don’t scoff at the vegetarian stuff: October is, in fact, National Vegetarian Awareness Month. But that’s neither here nor there.
Seriously, you should only ever need to buy certain vegetables once. Start planting your seeds, guys.
Make sure you scrape out the guts and bury it somewhere in your backyard for a never-ending supply of Rumbo Squash come next year.
Pumpkin Soup
  • 1 Rumbo Squash, cut in half( you can also use 1 large butternut squash, or any other pumpkin of a similar size)
  • 12 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1 generous bouquet of fresh thyme, plus one sprig
  • 1/2 black peppercorns, crushed
  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • 1/2 pt baby bella mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 bottle hard apple cider
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • Butter, A/N
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
Time: 2 hours
Yield: A big pot of love
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F, or 350 with high fan if you have a convection oven. Cut your squash in half  and remove the seeds. Since the squash are rather large, wrap one half of the squash in plastic wrap to save for later; or you can just double the recipe and freeze what you don’t eat in Tupperware containers! They make a great go-to quick dinner.
Line a sheet pan with aluminum foil and apply a tablespoon of canola oil to keep the pumpkin from sticking. Place your pumpkin, cut side facing up, on the tray and score using a knife. Make nice big hash marks, cutting in but not completely through the outer rind. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Arrange your pepper corns, half the garlic, and thyme sprigs onto the cut and scored surface. You can also take the garlic and rub it onto the pumpkin’s flesh for a bit of extra flavor, but that’s up to you.
Roast the pumpkin for about an hour, or until the flesh is easily pierced with a knife. Meanwhile, prepare your other ingredients. This practice is called mise-en-place, which is French for “things in place.” It makes cooking a billion times more stress free and cleaning your kitchen as you go like this makes for an exponentially faster cleanup.
Once your pumpkin is ready, remove from the oven and gently scrape out the flesh into a bowl. Your garlic, thyme, and peppercorns should be well on their way to broken down by this point, so just lump them into the bowl with the pumpkin puree. Discard the rind, unless you have a compost heap in the back. In which case, dump the rind in the compost.
In a heavy-bottomed sauce pot(a big soup kettle is ideal, the bigger the better), take about a Tbsp of canola oil(or another neutral oil, such as grape seed) and warm to medium heat. Add in the diced onion and remaining garlic, with a sprig of fresh thyme, and sweat together over medium-low heat, until it becomes translucent. The garlic shouldn’t burn because it’s still in the big cloves. Make sure you press your garlic down using the back of a spoon while cooking to really release the yummy flavors. Add in your sliced mushrooms at this point and continue to sweat.
Once sweated, about fifteen minutes, add in the pumpkin puree with your garlic, thyme, and all. Raise your heat to medium-high and add the cider. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer, uncovered, for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste for seasoning, then break out the blender.
I like to use an immersion blender for soups and sauces, usually, but you can use a regular counter-top blender if you like. But blitz the soup until it’s a smooth puree, adding in little knobs(just pieces that are about 1/2 a Tbsp each, cold, right from the fridge) of butter as you go. That’s a naughty little chef’s trick to help you get a super-smooth and yummy soup. Return the soup to the pot(if you took it out to blend it) and add the cream. Stir and taste for seasoning. You can serve on its own or garnish with some roasted mushroom slices. Up to you. But this yummy soup will warm you right to the bones on a chilly autumn night.
**continued heavy breathing**
**heavy breathing**
So, you see? Pumpkins aren’t just for Pumpkin Spice Lattes or Pumpkin Pies(although you can roast that other half of the Rumbo squash to MAKE yourself a pumpkin pie using the real puree yourself) or Pumpkin Muffins. They’re fantastic veggies to be used in many different ways. Boil the cubed pumpkin with your potatoes for a potato pumpkin puree as a side for your roasted chicken on Sunday! Saute pumpkin with shallots and arborio rice to create a wonderful risotto! Don’t be afraid. These pumpkins are just dying to be eaten.