Monday, January 6, 2014

January Pumpkins - Reduce ~ Reuse ~ Repurpose

Falls Decorations = January's Snacks

It's been awhile since I've done a "Reduce~Reuse~Repurpose" post and with my Fall pumpkins still sitting on my carport I thought this might be the perfect opportunity . I had of course taken my fall decorations off the front porch when decorating for Christmas . I however failed to throw them away . For once , my procrastination has paid off . Since I hadn't carved my pumpkins for Halloween one of them was still in perfect condition . The other for whatever reason didn't survive as well , so he got tossed for the woodland creatures to naw on in this winter weather . Last year I wrote HERE about roasting pumpkin seeds , which is one of my favorite snacks to make and give . With my one surviving pumpkin of course my  thought was to do the same .

Drying on a Paper Towel

I got a new mixer for Christmas that I have been dying to break in and with all this pumpkin I thought Pumpkin Bread might be the perfect recipe for my mixers maiden voyage . With the help of I was able to gather enough recipes for pumpkin puree and varied breads . I ended up using THIS pins recipe for my bread . To start at the beginning I must say this was a lengthier process than I had expected . I broke it down into two different days since I didn't begin it until late in the evening . My first step was cutting off the top of the pumpkin as though I was going to carve it . I then removed the seeds and guts . To make that process a little easier I cut the pumpkin in half .
After the gutting I sliced the pumpkin halves much like I would a cantaloupe . I then placed them on a foil lined baking sheet , poured just enough water onto the foil that it barely covered the ends of the slices . I first did a tray with out the water and the second tray that had the water came off the rind much easier . I baked them on 350 for about 30-45 minutes . I then let them cool . After cooling I was able to pull the flesh from the rind and place it in a food processor to make the puree . I added just 2 table spoons of water to the food processor . I ended up with about 10 cups of puree when all was said and done .

With the help of this Pinterest Pin and my trusty new mixer I moved onto the fun part.....the baking . This recipe made two loaves . I added chocolate chips to one loaf and chocolate chips with walnuts in the other loaf . Bakers confession , my loaf with walnuts was in a lighter tinted pan and I forgot to bake it longer , so it turned out to be more of a bread pudding . Today when trying to "rebake" it , I sure did forget and leave a knife in it . Sure ! Did ! Who do we know in the slammer ?

In the end my beautiful $4.00 pumpkin provided to be a wonderful fall decoration , two loaves of pumpkin bread , a pan of roasted seeds and I have about 7 1/2 more cups of pumpkin puree in the freezer for future projects . I can safely say this pumpkin was well worth its cost ! What are you working on in this new year and winter weather ?!


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