Pumpkin Prep for Cooking

Below are general cooking and preparation instructions, and you don’t have to use the mashed pumpkin right away. Pumpkin purée can be frozen spooning the cooled, mashed pumpkin into freezer containers, leaving 1/2-inch head-space to allow for expansion.  For convenience you can freeze in recipe size (2 cup) portions.   

A 5-pound pumpkin will yield about 4 1/2 cups of mashed, cooked pumpkin. One can of store bought pumpkin, 15 to 16 ounces, yields about 2 cups of mashed pumpkin.  

To Steam: Halve the pumpkin; remove seeds, pulp, and stringy portion. Cut into small pieces and peel. Place in a steamer or metal colander which will fit in a covered pot. Put over boiling water, cover, and steam for about 50 minutes, or until tender.  Mash up the cooked pumpkin then place into a blender or food processor and purée, or put through a food mill. Use in any recipe calling for pumpkin purée.

To Boil: Halve the pumpkin; remove seeds, pulp, and stringy portion. Cut into small pieces and peel. Cover with lightly salted water; boil for about 25 minutes, or until tender. Mash up the cooked pumpkin then place into a blender or food processor and purée, or put through a food mill. Use in any recipe calling for pumpkin purée.

To Microwave: Rinse pumpkin. Place in the microwave.  Microwave on high for 2 minutes.  Remove from oven.  Pierce entire pumpkin skin deeply with a fork or metal skewer.  Microwave on high for another 2 to 4 minutes. Remove from oven and wrap in foil. Let stand for about 5 minutes. Slice open the pumpkin. Remove seeds. Scrape-out pulp. Mash up the cooked pumpkin then place into a blender or food processor and purée, or put through a food mill. Use in any recipe calling for pumpkin purée.

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