Put the Pumpkin back in Pumkin Pie

November 27, 2009

I’m snitching a post from my sister’s blog because it describes our Thanksgiving as well as I can and why should I duplicate her prose, pictures or research?  Thus I give you Guest Blogger, KJ:

Thanksgiving was a great success (my family and I even whipped together a repeat performance on Sunday for my grandparents in Racine). Farmers’ Market mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, brussels sprouts, cranberries and our main course was polenta dome with yeasty gravy…so tasty. Dessert was my responsibility this year, and I created a hybrid of the traditional pumpkin pie in more ways than one.

Pumpkin praline pie…my sister made the crust from scratch too.

My first change was purely to satisfy my sweet tooth…I added a pecan prailine topping to the pie, which the family agreed takes the whole thing up a notch. But my second tweak was a little more experimental. My mom bought both a pie pumpkin and a pumpkin-like squash (apparently there was a shortage of pumpkins this year)

I was expecting to prefer the pumpkin hands down. But upon taste-testing the two after they had been roasted in the oven, everyone agreed the squash was sweeter and smoother. The pumpkin, while still good is more fibrous and I think I’ll be using it for more savory meals for now.

We used equal parts of both the squash and the pumpkin in our pies. But it turns out I wasn’t cutting back on pumpkin compared to the canned variety. I was adding it in entirely.

Apparently, Libby’s (the main distributor of canned pumpkin) also uses squash that looks more like butternut squash than pumpkin. The squash they use, Dickinson, has been deemed similar enough to pumpkin for Libby’s to still put “100% pumpkin” on their label. Seems harmless enough in this case, but this still makes me question the reliability of food labels.

I’d say both my experiments were a success. The prailine topping was delicious, and I may have to agree with Libby’s on this one…there’s something tastier than pumpkin to put in pumpkin pie. I don’t know that I’ll lose the traditional pumpkin entirely, but it looks like I’ll be adding a little diversity to my pumpkin desserts from here on out.

See more of KJ’s thoughts on food and other goodness here.

from → Thoughts on Food

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