Here are two recipes for making your own pumpkin puree - now it's easier than ever to eat pumpkin, a vegetable that is surprisingly full of health benefits. If you're like me and tend to only bake with pumpkin in the autumn months, when this bright orange squash is in season, then there is no excuse for not using fresh pumpkin in your recipes. There's no doubt that fresh tastes better and is healthier, but you also never know what additives go into tinned food to extend its shelf-life, so I prefer to stay away from it, if possible.
The best thing about making your own pumpkin puree is that one large squash will yield more than you'll need for one batch of baking, therefore you can freeze the extra for future use. That way, you'll have pumpkin puree on hand that doesn't come from a tin!
The two recipes below are equally easy to make, so it's really up to personal preference which one you use. I probably slightly prefer the roasted method, only because I hate throwing out the cooking water for boiled vegetables, as much of the nutrition gets thrown out with it. Also, I find it impossible to peel a raw pumpkin, and the roasting method doesn't require you to do this! :) I've also noticed that the pumpkin in the boiled method retains slightly more water, so you may need to adjust the liquid content of your recipe, depending on which method you use to make your puree.
1 medium to large culinary pumpkin
Directions for the boiled method:
Directions for the roasted method:
For both methods, once you have made the puree, measure out the quantity you need for your recipe, and freeze the remainder in single-use portions for future use. Happy autumn baking!