Tag Archives: pumpkin

Pumpkin Fruit Cake

Pumpkin Fruit Cake

You don’t have to wait for celebrations and festive occasions to bake a really nice fruit cake, just like this delicious pumpkin fruit cake. It’s light, moist and keeps well and perfect with a cup of tea or, packed into a lunch box or picnic basket. This recipe is from fellow blogger Glenda whose blog is Passion Fruit Gardens, it was her Mum’s pumpkin fruit cake recipe… but not always Glenda’s favorite. Continue reading

Roasted Spiced Butternut Squash with Pumpkin Seeds

Roasted butternut squash or pumpkin is an excellent side dish for roast chicken, lamb or chops, but can equally be enjoyed served at room temperature as part of a warm Autumn salad with some couscous. Roasting this orange coloured vegetable/fruit intensifies and caramelizes their natural sweet flavor… which I favour over steaming! Although I steam butternut squash when making a purée for Pumpkin Ice Cream, which is quite delicious!

Over at  Jungle Frog Cooking Simone is hosting an Autumn Orange/Pumpkin theme for this months photography and styling challenge and as I have just come back from a Photography and Styling Workshop (more on the workshop later),  a good time to put some learning into practice and hopefully create an Autumn feel to the images while living on a sunny desert Island!

Roasted Spiced Butternut Squash with Pumpkin Seeds

Ingredients:

  • 1kg butternut squash or pumpkin, peeled, deseeded and chopped into chunks
  •  4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 garlic cloves, lightly squashed leaving the skin on
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pumpkin spice mix
  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt
  • a few twists of freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 fresh or dried bay leaves
  • 3 tablespoons pumpkin seeds

How to make: Preheat the oven to 200°C/Fan 180°C/Gas 6. Place the squash into  a large shallow roasting tin, add the olive oil, garlic, ground spice mix, sea salt , black pepper and bay leaf. Gently toss all the ingredients together with your hands.

Roast the squash in the oven for about 25 to 30 minutes or until the squash is tender and beginning to caramelize,  giving a stir halfway through.

While the squash is roasting, toast the pumpkin seeds on a dry pan over medium heat for a couple of minutes and set aside.

When the squash is ready, remove from the oven and place into a warmed serving dish and sprinkle over the toasted pumpkin seeds. Serve hot as a side dish or at room temperature as part of a salad. Serves 4.

pumpkin ice cream

Because the genetic history of the pumpkin is intertwined with the squash I thought I would use pureed butternut squash.  Saying “butternut squash ice cream” does seem like such a mouthful…so pumpkin ice cream it is! You can of course use canned unsweetened pumpkin if you like. Butternut squash has a sweet nutty taste and when blended together with some warm spices makes this a festive type of ice cream. As this is a custard based ice cream using free range eggs is my choice. So if you are a pumpkin fan…start churning!

Ingredients:

  • 225g  prepared butternut squash or canned pumpkin
  • 600ml whipping cream
  • 175g soft brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin spice (see note below)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon Kahlua (optional)
  • for garnish, 50g chopped walnuts (optional)

for the butternut puree

Peel the skin from one large butternut squash, cut into 1 inch cubes and steam for about 20 minutes or until tender. Pass through a food mill with a medium blade or place in a food processor and process until pureed. Put the pureed butternut squash into a sieve and place over a bowl, letting some of its water drain, about 45 minutes.

for the custard

Place a saucepan over medium heat, pour in the cream, add the brown sugar and pumpkin spice mix.  Stir to dissolve the sugar, heating the cream until bubbles form around the edges of the pan. Meanwhile, in a bowl whisk the egg yolks and Kahlua (if using) until smooth. Remove the mixture from the heat and gradually but slowly whisk into the egg yolks until combined.

Place the bowl with the mixture over a saucepan of simmering water. Stirring constantly, cook until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon (about 8 minutes) and leaves a clear trail when a finger is drawn through it. Do not let the mixture boil at any stage or it will curdle. Remove for the heat and cool, stirring occasionally to stop a skin forming.

Combine the pureed butternut squash or canned pumpkin, vanilla extract and Kahlua (if using) with the cooled mixture. Transfer the mixture to an ice-cream machine and churn according to the manufactures instructions usually 20 to 30 minutes. Remove the churned ice-cream to a freeze safe container, cover and freeze for about 2 or three hours until firm before serving.

Storage: This ice cream can be made a couple of days in advance. By placing  some cling film directly on the surface of the firmed ice cream and covering with a lid helps preserve its fresh taste. Home-made ice-cream will set very hard so I always place the container in the fridge for about 15 to 20 minutes to soften before using an ice-cream scoop.

 Pumpkin Spice Mix

 An electric spice or coffee grinder which is reserved especially for the job of grinding my spices and making up small batches at a time keeps the rich flavour of the spices at their freshest.

  • 1 teaspoon  ground allspice                        1 teaspoon whole allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon         or         1 inch piece  of cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon ground  nutmeg                         4 whole cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger                            1 teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 pinches of ground cloves                          1 teaspoon ground ginger

If using ground spices:Mix all the ground spices together and store in a small airtight container.

If using whole spices: Grind the allspice, cinnamon and cloves in an electric spice or  coffee grinder, then mix together with the nutmeg and ginger. Store in a small airtight container.

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