Is something organic if it is shipped across the country? What about the fuel that is used and how that affects our environment, not to mention the freshness of the food and a myriad of other factors. Over the last few years i have been reading everything i can get my hands on to help me answer these and other questions so sit back, relax and explore where my quest has taken me thus far.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Halloween Happiness

I love fall, I can smell it in the air, the crispy dry leaves and the delightful chill that surrounds me as I walk to the bus in the morning.  Halloween is this weekend so I thought that it would be fun to post a little Halloween themed recipe, it is fun and, of course, delicious.  We made this when we were camping in Vermont so it was originally made over the fire, however I have also made this in the oven and it turned out wonderful.

The recipe is for baked pumpkin so you will need a small cooking pumpkin, the smaller they are the sweeter they seem to be.
Cut the pumpkin open at the top and remove the seeds (save them for a yummy snack that will come later).
Fill a small pan with water and turn the pumpkin upside down, place near the fire or into the oven (which will be 350 degrees) cook until it looks tender but before it starts to get lopsided and fall over.
Pull this adorable orange squash out and with oven mitts carefully turn it over.  Discard the water, dry the pan and spray bottom with a non-stick spray of your choice.  Also reduce the oven heat to approximately 250 degrees.
With a spoon carefully and slowly scrape around the inside of the pumpkin, peeling the soft squash away from the outer skin, try not to puncture the skin.  Mash up these parts as well as you can and add butter, your cut up apple, pumpkin pie spice (and other spices that you would like) and maple sugar, if you do not have maple sugar or just plain have never heard of it (don't worry I have only ever seen it in VT, but boy is it delicious) use a dash of maple syrup as a sweetening agent.
Place your pumpkin back into the oven, right side up, you can pop the lid on but it's not necessary.  Let it cook a little more slowly, your kitchen should start to have the distinct and delicious aroma of pumpkin pie.  My best guess is to give it at least 1/2 hour but keep an eye on it as, again, you do not want the walls to collapse.

VOILA! it's crust-less pumpkin pie!

Oh! and don't forget the seeds!  Clean the seeds and place on a baking tray, you know the flat kind, sprinkle liberally with maple sugar or brown sugar and let them bake low and slow at about 150 degrees until they have dried out and are crispy.  Generally I take my pumpkin seeds to the salty place, but I urge you to try them this way, it's a really pleasant surprise.

Enjoy - have a great holiday weekend!!!


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