This summer was busier than usual which caused me to neglect the garden. This wouldn't have been such a big deal if I hadn't planted pumpkin seeds in the Spring. I finally made it down to the garden last week and found a pumpkin patch in its place! The tomatoes, Hibiscus bush, and squash were completely taken over by the pumpkin vines. When your kitchen is full of pumpkins, there's only one thing to do - make pumpkin puree. Once roasted and pureed, pumpkin can last quite awhile in the freezer. I've seen pumpkin puree used instead of ricotta cheese in lasagna, in chili and, my favorite, made into pumpkin butter.
The first recipe explains how to make pumpkin butter. You can use pumpkin butter in smoothies, on pancakes, on toast or in oatmeal. The second recipe is for the pumpkin butter smoothie.
If you don't have fresh pumpkins, you can always use canned pumpkin puree. Don't know how to puree pumpkin? Slice your pumpkins into 2" wide pieces, scrape out the seeds and roast in the over until they're soft enough to easily stab with a knife. Once cool, peel off the skin and puree in a food processor.
- 3 tablespoons Big Island Bees Macadamia Blossom honey (or honey or your choice)
- 15 oz of pumpkin puree
- 1-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (we use OceanFire Cinnamon)
- 1/2 cup apple juice
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup (Make sure you get the real stuff. If the ingredients say "corn syrup", it's no good.)
- 1/4 teaspoon grated ginger
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- pinch of salt
- Combine all ingredients and cook over medium-low heat for 15-20 minutes, until thick. Stir often to prevent the honey from burning.
- Let cool completely.
- Store in refrigerator.
Pumpkin Butter Smoothie
- 1 banana
- 1 carrot
- 1/2 cup almond milk (add more or less depending on how thick you like your smoothie)
- 1/4 cup oats
- 4 tablespoons of pumpkin butter
- 1/2 cup yogurt
- Add additional honey to sweeten
- 1 teaspoon chia seeds (optional)
- Mix chia seeds and almond milk in cup and let sit 5 minutes.
- Blend all ingredients, including chia seed mixture, until smooth.
- Smoothies are a great way to get your daily dose of vitamins. I like to throw in a 1/2 teaspoon of ground flax seeds and a couple leaves of kale or a teaspoon of spirulina.