Thursday, November 29, 2012

15 minute Pumpkin Puree

My kids went for a birthday party recently and brought pumpkin as part of their goody bags. Party was at the pumpkin patch and they got to pick a pumpkin and decorate with stickers and pompoms and bring it home. I have been trying to convince them to let me use it before it goes bad and today, they agreed to let me make a puree and use that puree to make them some baked goodie. When I decided to make puree out of the two pumpkins, it was already late and I didn't have the time to turn the oven on and bake them for 50 - 60 minutes. So, I made the puree in two ways and both are quicker than the oven baking method.

Pressure cooker method:
Place the cleaned pumpkin quartered in a pan and place the pan in the pressure cooker. Do not add any water into the pan which has pumpkin in it. Pressure cook for one whistle. When the pressure comes down, open the pressure cooker and scoop out the flesh and mash. There will be some of the juice released from pumpkin in the pan. Don't add it to the puree. It will mess up the consistency and hence the result of baked product. This took 15 minutes without counting the cooling time and the time taken to clean the pumpkin.

Microwave method:
Take a shallow microwaveable dish. Place the cleaned, quartered pumpkin in it. Cover with saran wrap tightly. Microwave for 10 minutes or till it is very soft. My microwave is not very powerful and it took 10 minutes in it. Let it cool a bit so that it is easy to handle. Scoop the flesh and mash. This takes about 10 - 12 minutes without counting the time taken for cleaning of pumpkin.

Observation:
Pressure cooker method will yield you darker pumpkin puree. Microwave method will give you light colored pumpkin puree.

Notes:
I have a manual baby food maker which is great for this. Few fibers left will be separated and you get very nice puree. You can either use a potato masher or food processor if making a lot of the puree. I measure one cup and place in ziploc bags and freeze for future use. They are good in the freezer for about 3 months.

Enjoy.

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