After selecting pumpkin as this month’s We Should Cocoa ingredient, I set about shortlisting pumpkin and chocolate recipes.
Pretty quickly, I realised there are two essentials if you want to bake with pumpkin – pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice.
I’m sure in many places both of these things are readily available to buy, but I’m yet to see either of them here in Cornwall, so I thought that in case anyone else has the same dilemma I would post the super simple ways to make them yourself.
First up, pumpkin puree.
Get a medium sized pumpkin and chop into wedges. Scrape out the seeds then place skin side up in a roasting tray with a little water in the bottom. Bake for 30-40 minutes at 180 degrees, or until the skin darkens and begins to wrinkle and the flesh softens.
Leave to cool, then peel the wedges and discard the skin (or eat it, if you’re me). Chop the flesh into chunks then blend in a food processor for a couple of minutes until fully pureed.
1 medium pumpkin produced 500g (or 2 cups) of puree, which I think is probably the same amount you’d get in one can. A bit more time consuming than buying it, but still not hard, by any stretch of the imagination!
For pumpkin pie spice, I used a recipe from My Baking Addiction, with the only change being to tone down the cloves.
Literally all you have to do is measure out the ingredients, mix together, and store in a spice jar. It will make enough for several uses, but that shouldn’t be a problem with all the delicious pumpkin recipes out there waiting to be tried! It would also be a great partner for apple, or other seasonal bakes.
Both my pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice have been tested out in my first pumpkin cake, which I will blog about very soon – and they worked out perfectly!