It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!

That's gotta hurt!
It’s pumpkin season! In the US, I’d buy big pumpkins specifically to carve them up like this for Halloween. It’s tradition! However, I rarely actually cooked the pumpkin. Any pumpkin I needed I got from a can. Libby’s canned pumpkin puree to be exact. The recipe for pumpkin pie (the only way I ate pumpkin) was right there on the can’s label! Easy peasy!

Now I’m in the Netherlands and Halloween isn’t that big a deal. Neither is pumpkin pie. But pumpkin as a food stuff actually is quite common. Still, if you want pumpkin puree, you’ve got to make your own. There’s no canned stuff here. Well, the expat stores tend to carry it, but it’s about €7 a can!

As the weather has started to cool off significantly and the first scents of wood fires could be detected in the air today, I figured it was time to buy a pumpkin. Tis the season, after all! But this time I don’t plan on carving it up. I plan on cooking it up and making my own puree to use in a handful of recipes I’ve come across recently. So while I was at the store today, I picked up a pumpkin. It’s a bit smaller than usual, and I do miss the “pumpkin patch” buying experience (even if the patch was just the front lawn of one of the local churches). Still, just having it in the house makes me feel like autumn is really here. Now, I wonder if I have a knife small enough to do a quick carving.
Pompoen Seizoen

6 thoughts on “It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!

  1. Oooooh! That’s an onion squash! They’re my FAVOURITE. They actually taste miles better than “proper” pumpkins do: one of the most dreadful culinary secrets is that the vast majority of pumpkins are quite watery and make for very sad eating. Even Libby blends their canned pulp with butternut squash, I believe.

    Onion squashes (named for the shape, not the flavour) have the most incredible sweetness to them, and roast up soft and silky. I adore them. What recipes are you planning to try with your little baby?

    • I’ve never heard of onion squash, but then I don’t remember seeing these particular beauties in the US (or at least my part). On the other hand, I do remember acorn squash, which doesn’t seem to exist here at all. Is the onion one like the acorn squash at all? A bit of mashed acorn squash served atop a bed of wilted spinach with some toasted pine nuts is a lovely side dish.

      Tonight’s dinner is going to be this whole meal. The fact that the onion squash isn’t as watery as normal pumpkin is good news. The one time I did roast a pumpkin and puree it, I was amazed by how watery it was. I also want to try this recipe from a fellow expat here in NL. Veggie enchiladas with a pumpkin cream sauce.

      I’m hoping all of this pumpkin/onion squash bounty will stop me from craving — and making my own — Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, another Halloween tradition. 😉

      • I think it’s quite like an acorn squash, yeah. But more. MORE!

        And those enchiladas………sniffle. They practically make me burst into tears with the delicious homeyness of it all. Please let me know how they turned out!

        I remember you linking to the recipe for your home-made peanut butter cups absolutely ages ago! I still have it bookmarked, in fact. It’s in my “Yum” folder. One day, I swear I’m gonna do ’em. One day.

    • In the end, I skipped the carving. The pumpkin is too small and I need it for tonight’s dinner. I may still do one for Halloween, though, if the spirits move me. 😉

  2. I am beyond sad Ezra can’t experience a real Halloween but we’ll do our best with pumpkin carving and dressing him up like a dragon! And Thanksgiving..can’t even begin to start…it’s nice to read about other expats keeping it all alive!!

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