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Karen Schuppert

Karen Schuppert

Call me crazy, (it wouldn’t be the first time) but I am a freak for everything pumpkin. I collect recipes throughout the year and while away the hours in my kitchen when autumn comes around.

I love creating recipes in the oven as well as the stove top, from sweet to savory. I prefer the texture and flavor of fresh pumpkin versus store-bought, but hey, sometimes we just don’t have the luxury of time to do the extra steps.

Thankfully, I’ve been able to source locally grown pumpkins in Baja, and they are bountiful at the Napa farmers markets, too.Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice

Makes 2 1/2 tablespoons

Why pay extra for this when it’s so easy to make? Though in a pinch, Trader Joe’s carries it this time of year.

4 teaspoons cinnamon

2 tsp. ground ginger

1 tsp.freshly grated nutmeg (I pack it in the teaspoon)- or 1/2 teaspoon dried

1 tsp. ground allspice (OK to omit if you don’t have it)

1/2 tsp. ground cloves

Combine all the ingredients in an airtight container or jar. Attach lid and shake to combine. Store at room temperature for up to 6 months. Shake jar before each use.

A Quick Way to Roast Pumpkin

Pie pumpkins are available at the farmers’ market. They tend to be sweeter, and average around 3-4 pounds.

1 small pie pumpkin (you can use regular pumpkin but if it’s large, cut into smaller pieces)

Rinse pumpkin under warm water, removing dirt. Cut pumpkin in half on a large cutting board with a sharp knife. Scoop out seeds with a metal spoon (I use an old measuring spoon that has a nice edge).

Put the pumpkin face-side down in a large baking dish. Cover with 1/4 inch water

Bake at 350 degrees F for 45-60 minutes (depending on size) or until tender, using a fork to check.

Remove from oven and scoop out insides, discarding skin. If not using right away, store in refrigerator in a glass container.

Keeps for five days in refrigerator.

Vegan Pumpkin Bread

Makes 1 8 1/2 by 4 1/2 inch loaf

What I love about this recipe is that this bread is so moist, and no eggs are required (because sometimes I just don’t have them on hand, plus it wouldn’t be truly vegan).

Dry ingredients:

1 3/4 cups flour (I use spelt flour or a gluten free blend)

1/2 cup powdered sugar

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1/4 cup brown sugar or coconut sugar*

2 1/4 tsp. baking powder

1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

2 to 4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice (recipe above)

3 to 4 Tbsp. chopped walnuts or pecans or omit to make nut-free

3 Tbsp. mini chocolate chips or cranberries or currants

Wet ingredients:

1 cup + 2 Tbsp. pureed pumpkin (fresh or store bought)

1/2 cup non-dairy milk

3 to 4 Tbsp. avocado or other neutral oil (can sub 2 tsp pumpkin for oil-free)

1 Tbsp. molasses or maple syrup

1 tsp. lemon juice

Pumpkin seeds or vegan mini chocolate chips for topping, optional

Preheat the oven to 365 degrees F.

In a large bowl, whisk the dry ingredients until well combined. Mix in the nuts and chocolate chips if using.

*If your coconut sugar has large granules, pulse in a blender to grind to finer state and use.

Add the wet ingredients and mix well. it will take a minute or two for the pumpkin puree to combine well. Mix until there are no pumpkin or flour streaks in the mixture. Add a tablespoon more non-dairy milk if needed.

Transfer to a parchment lined or well greased and floured loaf pan. Top with chocolate chips or pumpkin seeds or a streusel of choice.

Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until the toothpick from the center comes out almost clean.

Cool for 15 minutes then remove from the pan. Cool completely before slicing. Store on the counter for the day or refrigerate for up to 6 days.

Notes:

Pumpkin puree consistencies vary depending on the brand. if your pumpkin puree is too liquid, use 1 tablespoon less.

You can use butternut squash puree or sweet potato puree instead of pumpkin for variation.

To make into muffins, bake at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes, reduce temperature to 350 and continue to bake for 6 to 7 minutes. or until a toothpick test comes clean

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