If you like to shop the farm stands, Autumn may be one of your favorite times of year. Bins of every kind of pumpkin, squash, and gourd offer their unique personalities for our culinary and decorating pleasure.
I’ve tried cooking down sugar pumpkins for pie with satisfactory results, but actually prefer a dry squash such as buttercup for pie making. Every year I make a batch of pumpkin butter and, at the end of the day, I must say that my usual routine is to go with canned pumpkin for pumpkin butter, even after looking at all the farm stand beauties. Here is my recipe and it’s a quick and “no fail” deal….
Laura Cabot, Laura Cabot Catering, Waldoboro
1 29-ounce can of pumpkin purée
11/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup of cider
2 teaspoons ginger
1/2 teaspoon clove
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
Juice of a half a lemon, added last
Combine all ingredients except the lemon juice in a heavy bottom pot. Bring to a simmer and, stirring often, cook for 30-40 minutes until it is thickened. Let it cool and add the lemon juice, adjusting the spices if you so desire. Keeps in the fridge near forever. While this spicy and delicious butter keeps well under refrigeration, it is not safe to can. I love it on toast. It’s the essence of Autumn all year long!
Laura Cabot is an MF&L columnist and blogger, a French trained chef with a long career as a chef/restaurant owner, and president of Laura Cabot Catering in Waldoboro.