Pumpkins: Carve and … EAT Them!
Basic Pumpkin Purée
Preheat oven to 325° F. Cut a sugar pumpkin in half, stem to base. Remove seeds and pulp. Cover each half with foil. Bake foil side up, 1 hour, or until tender. Scrape meat from halves and purée in a food processor or blender. Strain to remove stringy pieces. Use in recipes or store in the freezer in freezer safe bags.
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds (also known as pepitas*)
Preheat oven to 350° F. Separate the seeds of a carved pumpkin from the stringy membrane and rinse the seeds to remove remaining membrane. Place seeds on a paper towel to dry for 20 minutes. Spray a cooking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and place the seeds in a single layer on a baking sheet. Lightly sprinkle with salt. Bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly browned. Cool and enjoy. Store extra seeds in an airtight container.
* Pepitas are packed with iron, zinc and monounsaturated fats.
Pumpkin Cheesecake … On the Lighter Side
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Bake Time: 60 minutes
Amount: 12 servings
Tips & Suggestions
A food processor works best for crushing the gingersnap cookies, however, a re-closeable food storage bag and a rolling pin will work also.
- 2 cups Shaw’s® gingersnap cookies
- 1/3 cup light butter, melted
- 2 (8 ounce) packages Shaw’s® 1/3 less fat neufchatel cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup Shaw’s® granulated sugar
- 3 Shaw’s® large eggs
- 1 cup Shaw’s® 100% pure pumpkin or 1 cup pumpkin purée
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
In a medium mixing bowl, combine crushed gingersnaps and butter. Press into the bottom and halfway up the sides of a spring form pan. Bake in a preheated 350°F oven 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool. In a food processor or using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and remaining 1/2 cup sugar until fluffy; scraping edge of bowl. Slowly add eggs, one at a time, scraping edge of bowl between each egg. With food processor running, add in pumpkin and pumpkin spice until well blended. Pour over gingersnap crust. Return to oven and bake 45-55 minutes or until cake is set 3-inches from edge but still wobbly in center when pan is gently shaken. Remove from oven and run a knife around edge of cake to loosen. Place on cooling rack and allow to cool 30 minutes. Run a knife along edge of cake again and transfer to refrigerator. Refrigerate, uncovered, until thoroughly chilled, at least 4 hours. Carefully release and remove side of pan before serving.