After they’ve been carved up for Halloween, the pumpkin has served its aesthetic purpose as the jack-o-lantern for all things spooky. Now that the trick or treaters are gone, the big orange gourd can serve its real purpose: all things tasty and delicious.
Here’s four pumpkin variations, courtesy of PumpkinRecipes.org, to keep you warm as the cold weather sets in this week.
Chili can be made in endless ways, but the best chilies are rich, chunky, spicy, and just a tad sweet. This recipe is all those things, plus a little more. Pumpkin makes for an unexpected creamy chili base, which creates an especially delicious dish. Perfect served with cornbread and sautéed greens.
• 4 cups water
• 1 (15-ounce) can canned crushed tomatoes
• 1 (15-ounce) kidney beans, drained
• 1 (15-ounce) can pureed pumpkin
• 1 cup chopped onion
• 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
• 1 cup uncooked bulgur
• 1 cup chopped Serrano chili pepper
• 1 tablespoon chili powder
• 1 teaspoon minced garlic
• 1 teaspoon cumin
• 1 teaspoon salt
Place all ingredients in a large saucepan, stir well to combine, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to medium-low and simmer, covered, 35 minutes. Serve warm.
Creamy Pumpkin Soup
Pumpkin soup, pureed to velvet creaminess, might be one of the most comforting soups known. Served piping hot on a long day, it can ease any tired mood. When served cold, this soup can be a refreshing zest of sweet and salty flavors, perfect for an invigorating lunch.
Creamy Pumpkin Soup
• 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
• 1/2 tablespoon flour
• 2 tablespoons brown sugar
• 1/2teaspoon salt
• 1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
• 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
• Nutmeg, to taste
• 3 cups chicken broth
• 3/4 cup light cream
• 3 cups pureed cooked pumpkin
• 1/2 cup julienned ham
Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and stir with a wooden spoon until thick and light golden, 1 to 2 minutes. Add sugar, salt, ginger, pepper, and nutmeg; stir to incorporate. Add chicken broth and cream; bring to a boil over high heat, whisking constantly. Add pumpkin puree and whisk until smooth. Add ham and stir to mix. Heat until warmed through, adjust seasonings, and serve.
Roast Pumpkin Lasagna
• 2 Cups Ricotta Cheese
• 1 Egg, scrambled
• 1 sugar Pumpkin or Butternut Squash
• 1/2 medium-sized onion, white or yellow, chopped ½ cup vegetable or chicken stock/ water
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
• 1/8 teaspoon dried sage or 1/4 teaspoon fresh chopped
• 1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese
• 1/4 cup brown sugar
• 2 cups shredded Mozzarella
• Olive Oil
• 1 Box of Lasagna noodles
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bring water to a boil and then add the lasagna noodles. Meanwhile, while the noodles are cooking, peel, deseed, and chop up the sugar pumpkin or squash, half an onion, and coat all with oil, salt, and brown sugar, and ¼ teaspoon sage and spread evenly on a baking sheet. Roast at 375 degrees F for 10- 14 minutes. When the pumpkin is fully cooked, add the garlic and cook for an additional 3 minutes. Take out and allow to cool a little. Scoop the pumpkin into a blender filling half-way each time and pureeing until smooth. Empty the contents into a bowl. Separately, combine and stir the two cups ricotta, the mixed egg, ¼ cup parmesan, 1 cup of the mozzarella, ¼ teaspoon nutmeg in a bowl with a couple pinches of salt and a sprinkle of pepper. Drain the noodles when done cooking according to the directions on the package. Begin layering the lasagna by putting some oil on the bottom of the baking dish. Then add a layer of pumpkin, then add a layer of noodles, then add a layer of the ricotta and mozzarella mixture, another layer of noodles, pumpkin mixture, and so on, alternating ricotta mixture and pumpkin layers. The top should be noodles, cover with the remaining shredded mozzarella and the rest of the parmesan and drizzle with oil. Cover with baking dish with foil. Bake at 350 degrees F for 40 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional five minutes.
Pumpkin Chipotle Soup
This pumpkin soup is made with roasted sugar pumpkin, smaller than a carving pumpkin and great for cooking savory meals. We spice it up with one canned chopped chipotle in adobo sauce. Chipotles are smoked jalapenos. They are reddish in color and can be found canned in many grocery stores nearby other Mexican specialty foods and ingredients.
They lend a wonderful smokey, sweet, and spicey flavor to your soup. Use less to tone down the heat or more to pump it up. Cool sour cream and chopped cilantro are a great garnish for this delicious soup.
• 1/2 Onion, chopped
• 1 Clove Garlic, minced
• Olive Oil
• 1 chipotle canned in adobo sauce, deseeded and chopped, AND 1 tablespoon adobo sauce from can
• 1/4 cup apple juice or cider
• 2 sugar pumpkins, peeled, deseeded and chopped OR 1 kobucha squash peeled, deseeded and chopped, OR 2 cans pumpkin puree OR 3 chopped yams
• 2 to 4 cups vegetable or chicken stock (depending on desired thickness)1/2 cup apple cider or apple juice
• Sour cream (optional) Cilantro (optional)
Sweat onion in olive oil with a pinch of salt until translucent looking in the pan. Add minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds to a minute more (until golden but not burning- garlic can burn fast). Add the chopped chipotle to the pan Add the apple cider or apple juice. Allow to cook off a little, i.e. evaporate a little, add the stock to cover the pumpkin. Allow to simmer on medium-high heat for 20 minutes to a half hour. Puree in batches in the blender filling only half way. Add remaining or additional stock or water to the finished puree and stir to create the desired thickness. Garnish with a dollop of sour cream and chopped cilantro.