Add a little twist to this fall favorite – timesherald


Today we are talking about pumpkin, the next fall harvest to write on my record.

I know fall is in full swing when I see stalls of pumpkins and moms welcoming me at supermarkets, farmer’s markets, and roadside stalls. Add to that the myriad of pumpkin spice products on display in the store.

Whether you carve them, cook them, or decorate your home with a perfectly formed orange beauty, pumpkins take center stage this time of year.

Pumpkin 101:

• The word “pumpkin” is derived from the Greek word “pepon”, which means “big melon”.

• It is a squash that is part of the Cucurbitaceae family.

• Six of the seven continents can grow pumpkins.

• Morton, Illinois is considered the “Pumpkin Capital of the World,” as it is home to the Nestlé / Libby Pumpkin Processing Plant where 85 percent of the world’s pumpkin is put into. preserves.

• The Irish brought the tradition of carving a pumpkin to the United States.

• According to, “The largest pumpkin pie ever made was over five feet in diameter and weighed over 350 pounds. He used 80 pounds of cooked pumpkin, 36 pounds of sugar, 12 dozen eggs, and took six hours to cook.

• In the early colonial era, pumpkins were used as an ingredient for the crust of pies, not as a garnish. The settlers sliced ​​pumpkin wedges; removed the seeds and filled the inside with milk, spices and honey. This was baked in hot ashes and is the origin of the pumpkin pie.

• Pumpkins were once recommended for removing freckles and treating snakebites.

It’s such a versatile ingredient that it can be baked, boiled, steamed, fried, and roasted. The blank canvas awaits your culinary creativity. Pumpkin seed oil is used to make salad dressing. Roasted seeds are a healthy snack. I became a fan of SuperSeedz, flavored pumpkin seeds. My favorites, maple sugar and sea salt and dark chocolate with sea salt. I met Kathie, the founder of the company, at a food fair. The recipes on the site are simple and healthy; caramelized pear parfaits, Asian coleslaw, Nutella mousse, pumpkin yogurt parfait and maple buckwheat flapjacks. Until November 5th, enjoy 25% off your purchase You will be addicted to Superseedz,

Pumpkin isn’t limited to lattes, ice cream, and pies. I’ve noticed that new pumpkin spice products are popping up this season: Pumpkin Spice Almonds, Oat Milk, Irish Cream Liqueur, Peanut Butter, Breakfast Cereal, Twinkies, Chocolate hot, English bagels and muffins, Pumpkin Pie Pop Tarts and even dog treats! The one that really caught my eye… Epic Pickles of York, PA Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Pickles! I don’t know if I can even say now that I’m going to try anything pumpkin spice. I guess I should try.

Book cover. (Recipes by author Eliza Cross, photographs by Susan Barnson Hayward from Pumpkin It UP, reprinted with permission from Gibbs Smith)

For this season’s pumpkin inspiration, I took “Pumpkin It Up!” by Eliza Cross (2016, Gibbs-Smith, $ 16.99) over the counter. I have found sweet and savory ways to enjoy pumpkin, both traditional and with unexpected twists. From homemade pumpkin pie spice blend, classic pumpkin pancakes for a Sunday breakfast, to a heartwarming pumpkin, corn and shrimp bisque (recipe below) to liven up dinner, a Decorative and delicious fall stew (recipe below) to a decadent pumpkin tiramisu for dessert (recipe below), your pumpkin craving is covered. The versatility makes it the perfect ingredient to star in appetizers, soups, pastas, gratins, risottos and, of course, desserts. For the Maple Roasted Pumpkin and Brussels Sprouts recipe, visit For the Pumpkin Fluff Dip recipe, visit

Maple roasted pumpkin and Brussels sprouts (recipe at

The author’s advice is also helpful. Some examples :

“When choosing a pumpkin for baking, look for the smaller pie pumpkin varieties that are sweeter and have a smoother texture than those grown for carving pumpkins. “

“An 8-inch diameter pie pumpkin will make about 3 cups of cooked, mashed pumpkin.”

“When buying canned pumpkin, look for cans labeled” sturdy packaging “rather than” pumpkin pie filling, “which have added ingredients.”

Create family memories this season by picking your pumpkin at a U-pick farm. Then come home and cook a pumpkin lantern and make a dish with the freshly picked squash.

Here are several places to enjoy fall, including U-pick farms, hay walks, corn mazes, and old-fashioned entertainment. Please call for up to date protocols, times and fall offers.

Hellerick Family Farm, Doylestown, PA 215-766-8388 www.hellericksfar, com

Highland Orchards, West Chester, PA 610-269-3494

Linvilla Orchards, Media, PA 610-876-7116

Merrymead Farm, Lansdale, PA 610-584-4410

Milky Way Farm Chester Springs, Pennsylvania

Solly Farm, Warminster, PA 215-357-2850

Styer Orchard Langhorne. PA 215-702-9633

Creamy pumpkin tiramisu. (Photo by Susan Barnson Hayward of Pumpkin It UP, reprinted with permission from Gibbs Smith.)

Creamy Pumpkin Tiramisu

1 ½ cup heavy whipping cream, chilled

3/4 cup sugar

8 ounces of mascarpone cheese, softened

1 can (15 ounces) cooked pumpkin puree

¾ teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice

2 packages (3 ounces) ladyfingers, halved

4 tbsp apple cider, divided

4 ginger cookies, finely crushed

In large bowl, beat cream and sugar until stiff peaks form. Add mascarpone, pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice; beat until filling is smooth.

Line the bottom of a 9 x 23/4 inch springform pan with a package of ladyfingers, breaking them off and overlapping to fit. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of apple cider. Spread half of the pumpkin filling over the ladyfingers. Repeat a second layer with the remaining bundle of ladyfingers, the remaining 2 tablespoons of apple cider and the rest of the filling. Smooth the top of the tiramisu, cover and freeze for at least 4 hours or overnight.

To unmold, run a knife along the inside edge of the mold. Release sides of pan and sprinkle with crushed gingerbread cookies. Makes 8 servings.

Pumpkin, Corn and Shrimp Bisque (Photo by Susan Barnson Hayward of Pumpkin It UP, reprinted courtesy Gibbs Smith)

Pumpkin, corn and shrimp bisque

1 tablespoon of olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, chopped

1 green pepper, seeded and chopped

2 cans (15 ounces) cooked pumpkin puree

4 cups of chicken or vegetable broth

1 ½ teaspoons seafood seasoning, such as Old Bay

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 14 ½ ounce cans of creamed corn

1 ½ pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined

Finely chopped green onions, for garnish

In a large saucepan over medium heat, heat oil and sauté onion, garlic and bell pepper until tender, 6-7 minutes. Stir in pumpkin, broth, seafood seasoning, pepper and corn; heat, stirring frequently, until mixture is simmering. Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring often, for 15 minutes. Add the shrimp, increase the heat to medium and cook until the shrimp are pink and opaque, 4 to 7 minutes. Serve garnished with green onions. Makes 8 servings.

Fall stew in a pumpkin. (Photo Susan Barnson Hayward from Pumpkin It UP, reprinted with permission from Gibbs Smith)

Fall stew in a pumpkin

3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided

2 pounds of beef chuck, cut into 1-inch cubes

1 cup of water

3 large potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes

4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch slices

1 large green pepper, seeded and chopped

2 garlic cloves, chopped

1 medium onion, chopped

2 teaspoons of salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons of beef broth granules

1 14 ½ ounce can diced tomatoes, with liquid

1 pumpkin (10 to 12 pounds)

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large saucepan over medium heat and brown the beef. Drain the fat and add the water, potatoes, carrots, bell pepper, garlic, onion, salt and pepper. Cover and simmer for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Stir in the broth and tomatoes.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. You may need to rearrange your oven racks to make the pumpkin hold.

Wash the pumpkin and cut a 6-inch circle around the top stem. Remove the top, cut the pulp from the bottom and set aside. Remove the seeds and stringy pulp. Place the pumpkin on a baking dish and carefully pour the stew inside. Put the top back on and brush the outside with the remaining 1 tbsp oil. Bake until pumpkin is tender, 1 ½ to 2 hours. Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes. Serve the stew directly from the pumpkin, with some of the cooked pumpkin Makes 8 to 10 servings.

Stephen Fries is Professor and Coordinator of Hospitality Management Programs at Gateway Community College, in New Haven, CT. He has been a food and food columnist for 13 years and is the co-founder and host of “Worth Tasting,” a food walking tour of downtown New Haven, Connecticut. [email protected] For more information, visit

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