Recipe: Pumpkin Butter
This Saturday is the Chatham Mills Farmers’ Market’s annual Thanksgiving Tasting, where vendors bring holiday dishes and recipes to share. Since it is the season of all things pumpkin (and I am a pumpkin fanatic), we are contributing a batch of homemade pumpkin butter. I’ve seen recipes for making butter out of canned pumpkin – and you could do the same here, by substituting two cans for the purée – but it’s actually really easy to work with the delicious little pie pumpkins available locally this time of year.
1 pie pumpkin (about 4 lbs)
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp maple syrup
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp salt
Cut pumpkin in half crosswise, scrape out and discard the seeds and stringy center (the side of a metal spoon works great for this), and place the pumpkin halves on a parchment-lined baking sheet (cut side down). Bake 45-60 minutes at 375°F or until the outer skin is easily pierced with a fork. Baking times will vary depending on the size, age, and variety of pumpkin, so as you’re nearing the 40-minute mark, start checking the pumpkin every five minutes or so.
Allow the pumpkin to cool until it can be handled, then scoop the flesh into the bowl of a food processor. Discard the skin and any burned bits. Process until smooth, about 30 seconds. You should end up with about 3 cups of puree.
Combine pumpkin, brown sugar, and maple syrup in a 3-quart saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, for 10-15 minutes or until the mixture is very thick. Liquid should no longer seep out of the mixture when a spatula is swiped across the bottom of the pan.
Remove from heat and stir in all remaining ingredients. Spoon into jar(s) and allow to cool to room temperature, then cover and store in the refrigerator up to 3 weeks.
Makes about 3 cups.