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PUMPKIN


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Kiwithrottlejockey
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« on: June 11, 2009, 07:14:24 pm »


Pumpkin scones

By PATRICIA SOPER - The Southland Times | Saturday, 16 May 2009

HEARTY FARE: With the colder weather on the horizon what could be more inviting or economical than a batch of delicious scones as an accompaniment to a bowl of soup, or simply as a substantial morning tea.  PATRICIA SOPER/The Southland Times.

HEARTY FARE: With the colder weather on the horizon
what could be more inviting or economical than a batch
of delicious scones as an accompaniment to a bowl of
soup, or simply as a substantial morning tea.
PATRICIA SOPER/The Southland Times.


The arrival of pumpkins signals the colder weather here in the south.

They are a good old standby that keep well, are suitable for mashing, roasting or a sweet pie filling.

Rich in iron and bland enough to appeal to the youngest palate, pumpkin is one vegetable that is truly versatile.

Butternut and crown are the two most prominent varieties sold in our southern supermarkets, but the pumpkin family is huge.

I would be interested to know if any other types are commercially available in New Zealand.

I have seen warty, elongated and small varieties in gardening books and on the internet, some that look like large ornamental gourds and some that bear little resemblance to pumpkins at all.

As a child the only way I remember eating pumpkin was roasted with meat or mashed with lots of parsley, methods that have retained their popularity.

I now like to include cubed pumpkin in a roast vegetable miscellany with diced potatoes, red pepper, kumara, garlic and fresh rosemary.

Just toss them all together with a little oil and cook in a hot oven for about 25 minutes.


Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • tsp salt
  • 1 tsp curry powder (or to taste)
  • 250g cooked, mashed pumpkin
  • 60g cold butter
  • 1 egg
  • cup milk or buttermilk
  • cup chopped parsley

Method:

  • Cut pumpkin flesh into cubes then weigh.
  • Steam or microwave until cooked, drain well, mash, then season with salt and black pepper, set aside to cool then add the chopped parsley.
  • Measure flour, salt, curry powder and baking powder into a large bowl.
  • Grate the cold butter into dry ingredients and toss lightly with a fork.
  • In a separate bowl lightly beat egg and combine with milk.
  • Add the cooled mashed pumpkin to the dry ingredients.
  • Stir mixture with a knife to gauge the wetness of the mixture.
  • Gradually add the milk-egg combo until the dough can be worked with your hands and leaves the bowl clean.
  • The mixture should not be dry. Add a little more milk if necessary.
  • Set oven at 200C and lightly grease an oven slide.
  • Turn dough out on to a floured surface and pat into a square or wheel shape.
  • Cut the dough into pieces with the back of a floured knife or a scone cutter; I made a wheel and divided mine into eight large scones.
  • Brush tops with milk and bake for about 25 minutes.
  • Transfer to a cooling rack and cover with a clean tea towel.
  • Split and serve with butter.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/features/food-wine/2412488/Pumpkin-scones[/list]
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Kiwithrottlejockey
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« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2009, 07:14:48 pm »


Afghan sweet poached pumpkin

By LOIS DAISH - Cuisine | Monday, 18 May 2009

SIMPLE PUMPKIN: Not only is this a good winter accompaniment for lamb, it is a harmonious partner for a simple rice pilaf. — AARON McLEAN/Cuisine.

SIMPLE PUMPKIN: Not only is this a good winter accompaniment for lamb,
it is a harmonious partner for a simple rice pilaf. — AARON McLEAN/Cuisine.


This way of cooking pumpkin, based on a recipe from Afghanistan, is very moist, with the sweetness of the cooking liquid nicely balanced by the tangy yoghurt.

Not only is this a good winter accompaniment for lamb, it is a harmonious partner for a simple rice pilaf. If you also want to serve a green vegetable, choose silverbeet sliced and steamed with a little water and butter, or toss a peppery watercress or rocket salad. A bowl of slow-fried red onions would also be delicious.


Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 500g chunk pumpkin, preferably grey-skinned (crown) or buttercup, peeled, seeded and cut into smallish chunks
  • ½ cup thick plain yoghurt
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed to a paste with salt

Method:

  • Place the butter in a wide saucepan or deep frying pan over medium heat until melted then add the onion and fry until just starting to colour.
  • Season with salt and pepper, and add the sugar and water. Bring to the boil then add the pumpkin, preferably in a single layer.
  • Cover with a lid and simmer very gently until the pumpkin is tender and most of the liquid absorbed.
  • While the pumpkin is cooking, combine the yoghurt and garlic. Serve the pumpkin and its sauce in a shallow serving bowl and spoon the yoghurt on top.

Serves 4.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/food-wine/2420872/Afghan-sweet-poached-pumpkin
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Kiwithrottlejockey
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« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2009, 07:15:01 pm »


Pumpkin pie

BY PATRICIA SOPER - The Southland Times | Saturday, 23 May 2009

AUTUMN WARMER: Spicy and smooth, pumpkin pie is a wonderful family pudding that has honest nutrition and, once mastered, can be varied according to your taste. — PATRICIA SOPER/The Southland Times.

AUTUMN WARMER: Spicy and smooth, pumpkin pie is a
wonderful family pudding that has honest nutrition and,
once mastered, can be varied according to your taste.
— PATRICIA SOPER/The Southland Times.


I still remember the first pumpkin pie I ever made.

It must have been about 35 years ago and I thought it was a fairly radical concept.

The recipe was in one of Alison Holst's first books, a hardback given to me by a friend. The front-cover photograph of Holst is retrospectively hilarious because she looks younger now than she did back then; it must have been something to do with her hairstyle or the paisley shirtwaist dress she wore for the cover photo.

I used that recipe book until it literally fell to bits so splashed with detritus that the recipes were almost indecipherable. But I really believe that Holst brought the best aspects of New Zealand home cookery together and presented young cooks of the 1960s with fantastic recipes that kick-started their own creativity.

Cooks like me owe her much, not least the courage to give it a go.

Today's recipe is my own but you can vary the spices if you like.


Ingredients:

  • Sweet short pastry (about 1 sheet)
  • 1kg pumpkinw1 cup cream
  • ½ cup soft brown sugar
  • 3 eggs plus an extra egg yolk
  • 1 level Tbsp cornflour
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • Generous grate of fresh nutmeg (about tsp)
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp vanilla essence or seeds from a vanilla pod

Method:
 
  • Set oven at 180°C.
  • Line a 23cm pie dish with short pastry, prick the base then refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Place a disc of baking paper on the pie base and weight with ceramic beans.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, remove blind baking material then return to oven for a further 15 minutes. Set aside.
  • Peel, deseed and cut pumpkin into large cubes. Steam or gently boil until soft.
  • If pumpkin is slightly watery after cooking and draining, return to heat and let water evaporate. Watch this process carefully.
  • Set pumpkin aside to cool.
  • Whisk eggs, sugar and vanilla together then stir in cream, cornflour and spices.
  • Add mixture to cooled pumpkin and stir gently.
  • Spoon filling into pastry shell and bake for 45 minutes.
  • Dust cooked pie with sieved icing sugar.
  • Serve warm with whipped cream.

Cook's tip: Any pastry off-cuts can be fashioned into leaves for decoration.

Bake them for 10 minutes at 180°C and serve with each wedge of pie.


http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/features/food-wine/2433720/Pumpkin-pie
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Kiwithrottlejockey
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« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2009, 07:16:35 pm »


Pumpkin eaters

By GRAHAM HAWKES - The Southland Times | Saturday, 30 May 2009

PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE

            PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE

As autumn brings us closer to winter it also brings us one of my favourite vegetables, the pumpkin which we appreciate as a vegetable but is in fact a fruit.

A member of the cucurbitaieae family pumpkins come in a great variety of sizes, colours and indeed sweetness.

Pumpkin seeds have been found in Mexico dating back to somewhere around 6000BC indicating they have been around for quite sometime.

Thought to have originated in South America the plants produce colourful and bright male and female flowers with a very short lifespan opening for as little as a day.

Grown in all continents with the exception of Antarctica pumpkins provide great versatility for the culinary world.

In some areas they are considered animal fodder and are suitable for many styles of cooking including roasting, poaching, pureeing, steaming or baking.

They are also popular internationally used in both sweet and savoury style dishes and often the hero of vegetarian dishes throughout the Asian countries.

The Italians will often match pumpkin with cheese as a filling for ravioli where the Thais will bake custard in small whole pumpkins. The Japanese will include pumpkin in their fabulous tempura dishes where the Chinese will utilise the leaves as both a vegetable or an ingredient in soups.

And let's not forget where pumpkins have fitted into fairytales with the fairy godmother turning a pumpkin into a carriage and back again.

Pumpkins were also the subject of some now-famous Dutch still life masterpieces.

When buying pumpkin ensure there is a reasonable length of stalk still attached.

Check there are no cracks or splits in the skin. This will help ensure the life of the pumpkin by not allowing insects to get in and destroy it during storage.

My favourite pumpkin for roasting is definitely the butternut.

However, for quiches and pies I find the grey skinned variety excellent.

When it comes to soup my preference would be for the orange skinned variety.

Pumpkin is perhaps not a favourite when it comes to sweet dishes down under, so this week let's look at utilising the abundance of good quality pumpkins about at the moment and produce a delicious cheesecake, especially for those who prefer a not so sweet baked style of cheesecake.


—————————————————————————

PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE

Ingredients for the Base:

  • 2 cups crushed plain biscuits (malt or wine)
  • cup melted butter
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup walnut pieces

Method for the Base:

  • Place the biscuits in a bowl and mix in the cinnamon and walnuts.
  • Mix in the melted butter and continue to mix until well combined.
  • Press the mixture into the base of your pie plate and leave in the fridge to set for about 30 minutes.

Ingredients for the Filling:

  • 1 cup of mashed pumpkin
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 2 large eggs
  • 500g cream cheese
  • ½ tsp cinnamon

Method for the Filling:

  • Place the mashed pumpkin and cream cheese into your mixing bowl and whisk until well combined.
  • Add the vanilla essence and continue to mix.wAdd the eggs and cinnamon and whisk until completely combined.
  • Take care not to over whisk as this will cause your cheesecake to sink when cooked.
  • Place the mixture into the pie dish on top of the prepared base and place into a pre-heated oven at 150°C and bake for 30 minutes or until just set.
  • When set the centre should be just firm. If it is still slightly wobbly leave in the oven for a further 5 minutes.

Ingredients for the Topping:

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • Freshly grated nutmeg to taste

Method for the Topping:

  • Place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix completely.
  • Spread over top of the cooked cheesecake and place back in the oven with the oven turned off.
  • Leave for about 15 minutes until set.
  • Remove from the oven and place in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours to cool completely before service.
  • Serve as it is or with some plain unsweetened yoghurt alongside.

Bon appetit!

http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/features/food-wine/2458605/Pumpkin-eaters
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