Halloween’s come early! The pumpkin in disguise.

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I was kindly gifted a pumpkin this week by a very nice man called James who I always make fruit cakes for. To be honest, I don’t usually buy pumpkin as I have no idea what to do with it and being a Scot, I don’t eat vegetables in a sweet pie. Yes, I’ll admit it, I’ve never tasted pumpkin pie.

Anyway, I chopped up my pumpkin and then I looked at it thinking I’d try making a pumpkin pie but no, I couldn’t do it!

I cooked up some pumpkin and I puréed it. I looked at it again and again and I can’t say I was excited. I played my favourite music looking for inspiration but none was coming so I then decided that I would pretend that the pumpkin was squashed banana and hey presto, I made banana (pumpkin) protein pancakes and banana (pumpkin) bread, using 2 of my regular banana recipes.

I then decided to pretend that the pumpkin was a butternut squash and I made butternut squash (pumpkin) soup.

Verdict. I loved it!! The soup was brilliant.

Definitely making pumpkin pie next!

If in doubt, make it up 🙂

I shared the recipe for my pancakes with Tara and these will feature on the For the Health of It Cayman Facebook page shortly.

For now, here’s the bread and the soup. Remember to check the notes!

Pumpkin bread

Ingredients
250g spelt flour*
70g coconut sugar or other unrefined sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons mixed spice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
80ml of coconut milk
80ml of coconut oil (melted)
350g of puréed pumpkin
2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed (linseed)(optional)
Handful of pecans (optional)
Handful of coconut (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda and spice.

Mix together the oil, sugar, milk and vanilla. Add the wet mix to the dry mix together with the pumpkin puree and mix well. Add the pecans.

Grease and coat the base of a loaf tin with coconut (helps to prevent sticking) and add the mixture. Bake for 50 – 60 minutes (firm to touch). Once done, remove from oven, let cool slightly before serving.

Notes:

*You can use other flours but the texture will be different. If using whole wheat, use whole wheat pastry flour (finely ground).

*The bread is not very sweet. Perhaps taste the batter and add more sugar if you need. I tasted the batter to get a feel for taste.

Pumpkin and bean soup.

Approx 1kg of diced pumpkin
1/2 chopped onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 teaspoon of each of ground cumin, ground turmeric, ground coriander and ground paprika.
A thumb size piece of grated ginger or 1 teaspoon of ground ginger
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper to taste
1 to 2 cans of beans (I used great northern white beans)
500ml of stock or water
Chopped parsley

Sautée the onion in a teaspoon of oil. Add the pumpkin and the garlic and season and sautée together for about 15 minutes.

Add the spices and continue sautéing for a further 5 minutes.

Pour in the stock or water (I used water as I only had chicken stock and didn’t have time to make vegetable stock as I was hungry (I wanted to make this soup vegan)), cook for a further 5 minutes and then blitz in a blender or with an immersion blender.

Add the beans and warm through. Add more water if need be and add the chopped parsley.

Serve and enjoy!

I could have added a dollop of creme fraiche to make the picture look good but I don’t like the stuff 🙂

#betruetoyourself

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