This is a fun recipe using sugar pumpkin all packaged up and then baked into a delicious, spicy, autumn presentation. I first got this idea from a 1980 something Yankee magazine, since then I’ve seen many variations.
It’s very easy and so versatile, just hollow out a pumpkin and fill it with your favorite stuffing. My next pumpkin adventure will be to stuff with pumpkin cheesecake flavors and serve it for dessert.
Note: sugar and pie pumpkins are the same thing; you don’t want to use a jack-o-lantern pumpkin.
Cut off the top of the pumpkin, creating a lid about 4 inches in diameter, de-seed it. Set aside until needed.
Scoop the seeds and strings out of the pumpkin.
Rub the cut side of the lid and the inside of the pumpkin with the 1 tablespoon room-temperature butter. Place the pumpkin, cut side up, in a deep baking dish or pan that you can bring to the table. Set aside.
In a large bowl combine the baguette, cheese and ham. Set aside until needed.
In a skillet, melt 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add the apple, jalapeno, onion and garlic, stir until soft, about 8 minutes. Fold into the bread mixture. Salt and pepper to taste.
Stuff the pumpkin until it is just about filled; then pour cream, one tablespoon at a time, to within 1 inch of the rim; enough to moisten the filling. Fit the lid onto the pumpkin.
Bake until the pumpkin begins to soften and brown on the outside and the stock bubbles on the inside, 1½ to 2 hours.
To serve, use a spoon to carefully scrape the walls of the pumpkin to remove some tender pumpkin flesh with each serving of stuffing; it’s up to you, you could eat the skin too, just cut the pumpkin into slices to serve…I’ve not tried that.
Best served as soon as it’s ready. If you have leftovers, cut the pumpkin into slices, cover, chill and reheat the next day.