Fall Into Pumpkin Desserts
Pumpkin CakePumpkin treats are perfect for cooler weather and the upcoming holidays.
By Sidney Carlisle
October is the beginning of pumpkin season and signals the approach of the two official pumpkin holidays - Halloween and Thanksgiving. Both holidays require pumpkin and wouldn't be complete without it. And while you and I are planning decorations and menus, pumpkin growers are busy harvesting pumpkins that fit into specific categories.
Once grown only for food, there are now many pumpkin varieties and most are grown for a particular reason. There are pumpkins used for cooking, for carving, and decorating, and large specimens grown just for exhibitions. It's important for shoppers to choose the right pumpkin for the job since a hard-shelled carving pumpkin will not be the best choice for a Thanksgiving pie. Inexperienced cooks or carvers might do well to ask for assistance since the selection at some markets can be overwhelming.
Choosing a pumpkin for pie can be tricky also. Pumpkins used for cooking are usually labeled as pie pumpkins and varieties like "Small Sugar" or "New England Pie" should be available in time for Thanksgiving baking. An ornamental miniature called "Jack Be Little" is also a good baking pumpkin.
For cooks who'd rather buy pumpkin in a more convenient container, there's canned pumpkin. The best known brand is probably Libby's. They've been selling cans of puréed pumpkin since the late 1920's and their pie recipe is printed on the can.
Almost everyone has an opinion about pumpkin pie and even folks who don't like it seem compelled to share their view. Those of us who love the spicy treat just ignore the complainers and will happily eat the pie any time of year. True fans can eat pumpkin pie unadorned, but it's also good served with extra touches like whipped cream or crunchy toppings.
Choosing a pumpkin for pie can be tricky.Whether you're baking your own pumpkin or opting for the canned version, pumpkin treats are perfect for cooler weather and for the upcoming holidays.
How To Cook Fresh Pumpkin
Pour into the prepared pan and bake 1 hour. Cool 20 minutes in the pan and turn out on a wire rack to cool completely. Ice with Vanilla Icing.
Vanilla Icing: Combine 1/4 cup softened butter, 1 package (3 ounce) softened cream cheese, 1 teaspoon vanilla and 1 tablespoon milk. Add 2 cups powdered sugar and beat until smooth. The icing should be fairly thick. Spoon onto the top of the cake.
Place the pumpkin in a mixing bowl. Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl, blending well. Whisk the sugar mixture into the pumpkin. Whisk in the two eggs and then the evaporated milk. Carefully pour this mixture on top of the partially baked crust. Sprinkle with the remaining crumb mixture. Bake about 30 minutes, until set in the middle.
To serve, cut into squares and top with sweetened whipped cream or non-dairy whipped topping. Pumpkin squares may be served warm or at room temperature.
Sidney Carlisle lives on a ranch in Meridian, Texas If you have questions about this article or the recipes, contact us at moc.gnikoocsaxet@nibrof_solkim.
Online Since 1997
Follow us on Twitter
Our Facebook Fan Page
TexasCooking on Flickr
Recipe Exchange, Chat
Texas Wines & Wineries
for your food business