Wednesday, October 5, 2011

How to Make: Pumpkin Butter


Pumpkins are another thing that I love about the Fall. Really though, who doesn’t? You can carved jack o’lanterns, make pumpkin pie, and of course pumpkin butter. It’s a lot like apple butter, using most of the same ingredients and of course time, but tastes a heck of a lot like pumpkin pie! This does take some time. It’s not that it’s a hard process, just a long one. Peeling pumpkins, cooking them down, pureeing them and then cooking them even more. It is worth it though. Of course you can always start with pureed pumpkin out of a can but I like the satisfaction that I get doing it completely from scratch.

What You Need:

A sugar pumpkin, about 2-2 1/2 pounds. These are not carving pumpkins.
1 c apple cider or apple juice
1/2 c maple syrup (the real stuff) or 1/2 c brown sugar
1/2 tbs cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp allspice
1/8 tsp cardamom (optional but gives bigger flavors)

What To Do:

Wash the pumpkin and peel with  a veggie peeler to remove the tough skin. Cut in half and scoop out the sides and the stringy stuff. Cut into chunks about 1 inch in size and place into a large enough pot so that all the pumpkin is in a single layer. Pour in enough apple cider/juice to come about half way up the sides of the pumpkin. Turn the heat on medium high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the pumpkin is soft, making sure to stir it a few times along the way.  This takes about 30 minutes. Puree the mixture, either using a stick blender or in batches using a regular blender. Return the pot. Stir in the maple syrup and the spices. Cook over medium low heat, stirring often, making sure to bring the pumpkin up off the bottom of pan. Keep cooking until it’s nice and thick and the bubbles take a long time to pop. It will take another 30 to 40 minutes. Let cool. Place into a container and store in the fridge.

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