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Pumpkins – Do you know the varieties?

LAPLACE — Are you a pumpkin eater? Do you know the different varieties of pumpkins? Well, let us get educated on some different varieties of pumpkins!

Seasoned folks are familiar with squash and other edible pumpkins for cooking cakes, pies, breads and soups. However, the younger generation is only familiar with going to coffee shops and getting pumpkins spice latte.

In today’s time, we have people making their own gardens and there are also farmer’s markets selling fruits and vegetables from community families with gardens. Farmer’s markets have lots of different varieties of pumpkins that are great for cooking. Let uslook at the different varieties of pumpkins that we can cook and enjoy with our families. During earlier years, Native Americans used pumpkin to cook everything from bread to soups during pumpkin season. Pumpkins can be used for grilling, baking, broiling, steaming or roastingas the Native Americansdid in earlier years.

The pumpkins that we carve for Halloween are different from the pumpkins that we cook to eat.  The pumpkins used for Halloween are large, hollow and have a flat bottom for standing up on porches and in yards for decorations. The pumpkins used for eatingare tasty in flavor, bright in color and nutritious. These pumpkins contain dietary fibers, vitamins A, C, E, B6, riboflavin, potassium, cooper, manganeseand many other nutrients needed for our bodies.

Just think, there is very little fat in pumpkins. Some of the different varieties areCucurbita moschata or butternut squash, acorn squash, Baby Pam, the white Baby Boo and New England Pie. The following are pumpkins that are good for cooking such as Chinese Cheese pumpkin (moschata), which is a squat, pale pumpkin that is excellent for baking.The Cinderella pumpkin resembles the pumpkin transformed into Cinderella’s coach. It is thick, sweetand has custard-like flesh. The Peanut pumpkin resembles a peanut with a warty exterior. It is a sweet, orange flesh perfect for soups. The pumpkin seeds are loaded with fiber and protein, which is healthy for your body.
So, when you go to the grocery store, or farmer’s market, pick up a pumpkin and make a pie or bread or cake and enjoy with your family.


Crustless Pumpkin Pie

INGREDIENTS:

Cooking spray

1 (15-oz.) can pumpkin puree

1 c. heavy cream

3/4 c. packed brown sugar

3 large eggs

1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

1 tsp.cinnamon

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 tsp. cloves

1/2 tsp. ground ginger

1/4 tsp. nutmeg


DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 325°. Grease a 9” pie plate with cooking spray. In a large bowl, whisk ingredients together. Pour into pie plate and smooth top with an offset.
  2. Bake pie until center only slightly jiggles, 1 hour. Turn off oven and prop door open with a wooden spoon and let cool in oven, 1 hour.
  3. Refrigerate until set, at least 4 hours and up to overnight.