The 2018 growing season is ending for us. We will be open this Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday October 31st will be our last day open. Still plenty of Spaghetti and Butternut winter squash and Pie Pumpkins left for sale, as well as carrots, some beets, garlic, and fresh cut herbs.
Our ‘Winter Luxury’ pie pumpkin, an American heirloom from the 1800’s, is a premium cooking pumpkin that makes the smoothest and most velvety pumpkin puree, used for making pies/custards, soups, baked goods, etc. See instructions below on how to cook and prepare a whole pumpkin for making pumpkin puree. Also see below a recipe for making Starbucks Pumpkin Bread.
Spaghetti Squash: 55¢/lb.
Butternut Squash: 55¢/lb.
Bunch Beets: $2.75
How to Cook a Pumpkin
An easy way is to bake it. One can also boil, steam, microwave, or use a slow cooker. A three pound pumpkin will yield about 3 cups puree, enough for a pie.
1) Preheat oven to 350°F.
2) Rinse the pumpkin under cool water to rid the skin of any residual dirt and dry well with a clean towel. Remove stem.
3) Cut the pumpkin in half. Remove the seeds and stringy fibers with a metal spoon or ice cream scoop. Save the seeds for toasting, if you like, and discard the innards.
4) Rub the cut surfaces with oil. Place them, cut side down, in a roasting pan and add a little water if desired (1/2 cup – 1 cup), but generally, the Winter Luxury variety pumpkin has enough moisture in it already. Cover pan/pumpkin with foil to hold heat while baking.
5) Bake in the oven until the flesh is tender when pierced with a knife. This takes approximately 90 minutes.
6) When tender, remove the pumpkin halves from the oven and place on a flat surface to cool.
7) Once cool enough to handle, but not cold, scoop out the pumpkin flesh from the skin.
8) Puree the pumpkin in a food processor, food mill, hand blender, or by hand.
9) Pumpkin flesh holds a lot of moisture. Put the pumpkin puree in a a sieve or fine mesh colander lined with cheesecloth and set over a deep bowl. Let drain for about 2 hours and stir occasionally.
Use the finished pumpkin puree in your recipes, substituting it wherever it calls for canned pumpkin. The puree freezes well in an air tight freezer bag for later use.
Can you put a whole pumpkin in the oven? Yes, you can cook pumpkin whole – just cook it a little longer. I’d rather remove the pumpkin seeds in the beginning than fish them out of mushy cooked pumpkin at the end of baking, but to each their own.
RECIPE: Starbucks copycat Pumpkin Bread
Starbucks doesn’t share recipes but this pumpkin bread comes close. The bread is moist because of the oil and eggs, and has just the right amount spice.
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground clove
- ¼ teaspoon allspice
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons molasses
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¾ cup pumpkin puree
- ¾ cup canola oil, plus more for pan
- ½ cup pumpkin seeds
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8½-inch by 4½-inch loaf pan, set aside. Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, clove, allspice, nutmeg and salt in a medium bowl, set aside.
2. Mix the eggs, granulated and brown sugars, molasses and vanilla together in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment on medium-high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Add the pumpkin and oil, mix until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients, mixing just until combined. Pour into prepared pan and sprinkle with pumpkin seeds.
3. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 60 minutes.
4. Transfer to a wire rack and cool 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edges and invert loaf onto wire rack to cool completely.
Thank-you for following this blog and for your continued support. We look forward to growing again next year, serving our neighbors and the community with fresh, local, open-pollinated vegetables and melons. We’ll open our farm stand again in May 2019.
Until then, *peace*.
Why it Matters to Buy Heirloom Plants and Seeds
By: Annie B. Bond, November 28, 1999
The loss of genetic seed diversity facing us today may lead to a catastrophe far beyond our imagining. The Irish potato famine, which led to the death or displacement of two and a half million people in the 1840s, is an example of what can happen when farmers rely on only a few plant species as crop cornerstones.
One blight wiped out the single potato type that came from deep in the Andes mountains; it did not have the necessary resistance. If the Irish had planted different varieties of potatoes, one type would have most likely resisted the blight.
We can help save heirloom seeds by learning how to buy and save these genetically diverse jewels ourselves.
One kind of seed, called First generation hybrids (F1 hybrids), have been hand-pollinated, and are patented, often sterile, genetically identical within food types, and sold from multinational seed companies.
A second kind of seeds are genetically engineered (GMO’s). Bioengineered seeds are fast contaminating the global seed supply on a wholesale level, and threatening the purity of seeds everywhere. The DNA of the plant has been changed. A cold water fish gene could be spliced into a tomato to make the plant more resistant to frost, for example.
A third kind of seeds are called heirloom or open-pollinated, genetically diverse jewels that have been passed on from generation to generation.
With heirloom seeds there are 10,000 varieties of apples, compared to the very few F1 hybrid apple types.
The Mayan word “gene” means “spiral of life.” The genes in heirloom seeds give life to our future. Unless the 100 million backyard gardeners and organic farmers keep these seeds alive, they will disappear altogether. This is truly an instance where one person–a lone gardener in a backyard vegetable garden–can potentially make all the difference in the world.
Here are two sources for finding heirloom seeds from seed saving organizations. These organizations represent a movement of several thousand backyard gardeners who are searching the countryside for endangered vegetables, fruits and grains.