how to cool whole pumpkin
Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.
Are you sure it's still good? Is it whole or carved?
It depends on the variety of pumpkin. Some are grown for decorative purposes and others for cooking. Generally the smaller ones are sweeter and cook down better. You can make almost anything you would with a butternut squash. Soups, purée, ect.
Toss it if it was used for a Halloween face, otherwise you can boil, mash, and incorporate into a creme brûlée.
The pumpkins sold for carving at Halloween are not good for eating, they've been bred for size and have very little flavor. You can roast the seeds though if they haven't started to mold.
The ones sold at the store for eating tend to be "sugar" or "sugar pie" pumpkins and are pretty small, about the size of a large acorn squash. You cook them the same way you would any other squash: cut in half, remove seeds, place cut side down in a roasting pan with a little water, cover in foil and bake at 350 for 30-45 minutes. Or punch a few holes in the sides, wrap in a few layers of plastic wrap and microwave for 10-15 minutes (until soft). You can then use the mush to make a pumpkin pie or just eat with a little brown sugar and cream... or wherever else you would use pumpkin a recipe, just be aware that it will contain more moisture than from a can unless you cook out some of the excess water (cook on medium/low in a sauce pan, stirring constantly until it's fairly thick).
I make Pumpkin Butter, great on hot buttered Biscuits.
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And soon, summer!
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