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Tested Pumpkin Recipes

Pumpkin Bread Pumpkin Cookies Pumpkin Cheesecake
Pumpkin puree is used to make this sweet, moist, and flavorful quick bread. What sets this bread apart is a layer of cream cheese filling. more Pumpkin Cookies have a wonderfully soft and spongy texture and taste of pumpkin and its complementary spices (ground cinnamon, ginger and cloves). Absolutely delicious with a cream cheese frosting. more Pumpkin Cheesecake combines two American favorites; New York style cheesecake and pumpkin pie. It is the perfect dessert for Thanksgiving. more
Pumpkin Pie Pumpkin Scones Pumpkin Spice Cake
My personal favorite pumpkin pie recipe is this Pate Brisee recipe, as I like its' wonderful buttery flavor and crumbly texture. more In this recipe, pumpkin replaces some of the liquid and you end up with a dough that is slightly firmer and less sticky than other scone doughs. more What sets this moist and flavorful pumpkin spice cake apart is its wonderful maple-flavored cream cheese frosting. more
     
More Recipes Below

Pumpkin desserts start to enter my thoughts as soon as the heat of summer fades. Its sweet earthy flavor and dense fibrous texture is well suited for the baked goods we make during the cool temperatures of Fall and Winter. I love how adding pumpkin puree to muffin, scone, cake, pie, square, and quick bread batters turns them a lovely golden brown color and provides a moist dense texture.

All of the Pumpkin Dessert Recipes below call for pure pumpkin (puree). You can use either homemade pumpkin puree or  canned pure pumpkin. Just make sure if using the canned product you buy plain pure pumpkin (puree), not pumpkin pie filling, which has sugar and spices already added.

If you want to make your own pumpkin puree you need to use the small Sugar Pie, Baby Bear or Cheese Pumpkins (approximately 5-7 lbs., 2 1/2 - 3 1/2 kg.) which are sweeter and less fibrous than the larger pumpkins we typically use for jack-o'-lanterns. When choosing pumpkins look for ones that feel solid and are heavy for their size, free of blemishes, cracks, and soft spots. Once you are ready to make the puree; cut the pumpkin in half lengthwise, remove seeds and stringy fibers, and place cut-side down on a greased baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) for approximately 45 minutes to 1 1/4 hours (depending on size) or until easily pierced with a knife. Then scoop out the pulp and puree in a food processor until smooth. You can then strain the puree through a cheesecloth-lined strainer to extract all the liquid. Make sure to cool the puree before using. Continued below....

Pumpkin Cranberry Bread

Pumpkin Ice Cream Sandwiches

Pumpkin Roll

As its name implies, this quick bread is full of the flavors of pumpkin and fresh cranberries. Sweet and moist its flavor is enhanced by freshly squeezed orange juice and zest. more Pumpkin Ice Cream Sandwiches combine delicious chocolate cookies filled with white chocolate chips and pumpkin ice cream. more This lovely Pumpkin Roll consists of sweet and moist pumpkin sponge roll wrapped around a tangy cream cheese filling. more

Pumpkins

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

Pumpkin Bread Pudding

Pumpkins are an integral part of our Halloween and Thanksgiving celebrations. Yet the pumpkin's role is very different for each of these holidays. more Pumpkin Whoopie Pies take two round domed shaped pumpkin cookies and sandwich them together with a soft and creamy vanilla filling. more Pumpkin Bread Pudding is a delicious combination of cubed bread that is soaked in a rich custard containing cream, pumpkin puree, and spices. more

Pumpkin Cranberry Bars

Pumpkin Muffins

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

Pumpkin Cranberry Bars are moist and full of flavor and beg to be cut into large chunks and served with a steaming hot cup of coffee or tea. more

These pumpkins muffins taste great. They contain whole wheat flour, bran, pumpkin puree, raisins, and yogurt (or buttermilk). more

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins have a buttery flavor, dense texture, and are full of chocolate chips. more

Pumpkin Cupcakes Pumpkin Cake Pumpkin Bars
Pumpkin Cupcakes take a dense and moist pumpkin cupcake and frost it with a tangy cream cheese frosting and a sprinkling of nuts. more I like this honey colored Pumpkin Cake with its shiny chocolate glaze. This cake is full of flavor and keeps fresh for days, thanks to the pumpkin puree and canola oil. more Pumpkin Bars are a delicious combination of a hazelnut shortbread crust and a creamy smooth pumpkin filling. Lovely garnished with a piped rosette of whipped cream. more

Continued from above

A four to five pound pumpkin yields about 4 1/2 cups mashed. Just for your information, a 15 ounce (425 grams) can of pure pumpkin yields about 1 3/4 cups. If you have any leftover pumpkin puree you can store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for about two weeks or freeze it for about six months.

In North America, a sweet pumpkin dessert is usually flavored with some combination of ground spices. All the spices used have an aroma that is warm and fragrant, yet each has its own distinctive flavor. Ground cinnamon is usually the primary spice and Jill Norman in her excellent book "Herbs & Spices" describes cinnamon accurately "a warm, agreeably sweet, woody aroma that is delicate yet intense; the taste is fragrant and warm with hints of clove and citrus". Other spices include a blend of ground ginger (peppery with subtle lemon flavor), cloves (rich and spicy), allspice (peppery combination of cloves, cinnamon and nutmeg), and/or nutmeg (woody).

While you can follow the spice amounts given in the recipes exactly, there is wiggle room to alter the amounts and types of spices. This is especially true when it comes to ground cloves. This spice has a rich, warm and spicy flavor that is unmistakable. If you are a person who doesn't like it, just leave it out. The important thing is to use it sparingly as it can easily overpower other spices. Also, there are recipes that call for Pumpkin Pie or Mixed Spice. This is a blend of ground cinnamon, ginger, allspice and nutmeg. To make your own (one teaspoon) combine 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice and 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg.

Another point about ground spices is that they have a fairly short shelf life, often just a few months. So it is best to buy in small quantities from a bulk food store that has a high turnover. Store them in an airtight container in a cool dry place. Store them away from heat so it is not a good idea to store them by the stove.

Sources:

Daley, Regan. 'In the Sweet Kitchen." Random House Canada: 2000.

Lawson, Jane. 'The Spice Bible.' Stewart, Tabori & Chang. New York: 2008.

Norman, Jill. 'Herbs & Spices." DK Publishing, Inc. New York: 2002.

 

 
 
     
 

 

 

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