Video:How to Cook With Pumpkinwith Rachel Edelman
Pumpkins aren't just for Halloween! Learn how to choose perfect pumpkins at the store, and see how easy it is to cut, cook, and store all parts of a pumpkin.See Transcript
Transcript:How to Cook With PumpkinHi, I'm Rachel Edelman for About.com Food. Today I'm going to show you how to choose, prepare and cook a pumpkin.
Materials Needed to Prepare PumpkinTo cook a pumpkin you will need:
- a very sharp knife
- a scraper or ice cream scoop
- and a masher or blender
How to Choose PumpkinChoose a small pumpkin around the size of a small cantaloupe. The stem should be about 1 to 2 inches long. The pumpkin should feel heavy for its size. About 1 pound of raw pumpkin equals 1 cup of pumpkin puree.
Remove the Inside of the PumpkinFirst, cut the pumpkin in half. With a pumpkin scraper, scrape out stringy membranes and seeds. You can also use an ice cream scoop. You can save the seeds and toast them in the oven or cook them in the microwave as their own seasonal treat.
Microwaving PumpkinTo microwave a pumpkin, place the cut side down on a microwave safe plate. Cook on high for about 15 minutes.
Baking PumpkinTo bake a pumpkin, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the pumpkin into large pieces. Arrange the slices on a baking sheet. Put the sheet in the oven and bake for about 45 minutes or until pumpkin is soft. Take the pan out of the oven and let the pumpkin cool on racks.
Steaming or Boiling PumpkinYou can also boil or steam pumpkin. Put large chunks of pumpkin into a pot with about one cup of water. Cover the pot and boil for 20 to 30 minutes or until it's tender. Use a fork to see if it's done.
If you place the pumpkin on a steamer, steam for about 10 to 12 minutes.
Using Cooked PumpkinNo matter how you cook the pumpkin, when it is cool enough to touch comfortably, scrape the pulp from the skin. You may need to use a small knife.
You can mash the pulp with a potato masher.
For pumpkin puree, put the pulp into a food processor or a blender. Turn the blender on and blend for two to three minutes until it's smooth.
Serving and Storing Cooked PumpkinReheat if serving immediately, or refrigerate and use within 3 days. Pumpkin puree may be frozen in an airtight container or zip top bag for 10 to 12 months.
When serving, you can add butter, salt and pepper to season the side dish. Or you can add brown sugar for a sweeter option.
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