Easy Pumpkin Pudding Recipe
Pumpkin is one of the treats of fall
Pumpkins are one of the easiest vegetables to grow, and by October the farmers' fields are full of knobby orange globes welcoming laughing school children who take the trip to the pumpkin patch to choose their Hallowe'en Jack O'Lanterns. Our family always bought an extra pumpkin--one for carving, and one for eating.
After Hallowe'en, the Jack O'Lantern always headed for the compost pile, along with the seeds, which germinated in gay abandon in the sunny part of the garden the following spring. Some people enjoy roasting the seeds with a light coating of olive or canola oil and coarse sea salt or seasoning salt for about 30 minutes in an oven heated to 350 F. They have a nutty taste and are a nutritious, high protein snack.
Pumpkin Jack O'Lanterns
On the night of October 31, the eve before All Hallow's Day, people in North America carve faces in hollowed out pumpkins and light them with candles, or electric lights, supposedly to scare away ghosts, witches and monsters that are freed from the underworld before the saints send them back the next day, November 1. In many neighbourhoods, children dress up in costumes, go from door to door in the neighbourhood calling "Trick or Treat!" and receive small gifts of candy, popcorn balls or apples. As nights lengthen in the northern hemisphere, people have fun at the end of October decorating homes and businesses with witches, ghosts, spiders and Jack O'Lanterns.
Pumpkin for Thanksgiving, Hallowe'en and Harvest Feasts
In Canada, Thanksgiving always comes in early to mid October, and with pumpkin pie after turkey, cranberries, and roasted brussels sprouts on the menu for Thanksgiving dinner, and Hallowe'en tricks and treats at the end of October, we enjoy pumpkin all month long.
This recipe for easy pumpkin pudding can be used as a pie filling if you like. Our family doesn't really like pie, and once I got tired of throwing the soggy crusts, scraped of all the pumpkin filling, into the garbage after the meal, I started to simply cook the filling in a ple plate or flan dish, and serve it as pudding. If you make it as pie, pour the filling into your crust, then cook it at 425 F for 15 minutes to cook the pastry, before lowering the oven temperature to 375 for the rest of the time to cook the custard.
Pumpkin is low in fat, high in dietary fibre, an excellent source of vitamin A, rich in vitamin C and iron, and contains calcium. Native to North America, it is one of the vegetables that helped the first European settlers in the New World survive the harsh winters. In areas where pumpkin is not available, try the recipe with squash instead.
- 1 cup brown sugar, Substitute half the brown sugar for molasses if you like a stronger taste
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons ginger, If you like a spicier pie, try grating fresh ginger root instead of ginger powder
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon cloves
- 2 cups cooked, pureed pumpkin, Mash the puree or blend it so there are no lumps of pumpkin
- 2 eggs, well beaten
- 1 cup, milk or light cream
- Mix the dry ingredients together.
- Add the pureed pumpkin, the beaten eggs, and the milk or cream. Mix well
- Pour into a greased 9-inch pie plate or flan dish.
- Bake in preheated oven at 375 F for 45 minutes. Test if the pudding is ready by putting a knife into the centre. If the knife comes out clean, the pudding is cooked.
- Serve with whipped cream or drizzle maple syrup over the top.