What to do with Pumpkin

We had a bunch of leftover pumpkin (yes, still) from our Two Small Farms subscription last season, and I’d been brainstorming in my head about what to do with it.  I invented this recipe which uses pumpkin in many forms:  Pumpkin gnocchi.  Reading my copy of Silver Spoon, I was surprised to find that gnocchi are traditionally made from all kinds of things in addition to potato, including crushed bread with herbs and even amaretti cookies. I love gnocchi, and wondered to myself why you couldn’t make gnocchi out of pumpkin, the same way it’s made out of potatoes?  The results were mixed, but if I’m motivated I’ll tweak the recipe a bit more next time.

Beforehand: De-seed pumpkin and cut into quarters or smaller.  drizzle with olive oil and a bit of sugar, roast at 400 degrees for about one hour.

The pumpkin I had was relatively stringy, so I pureed it in a food processor after roasting it, yielding about 2 cups of pumpkin.

1 cup pureed roasted pumpkin
2 cups flour
pinch salt
one egg

Mix flour and pumpkin together until combined.  Add salt, and egg, then continue to mix until dough is soft and somewhat elastic.  I don’t think I got the proportions completely right here as my resulting gnocchi was a bit hard, but I was wary of the dumplings falling apart if not enough flour was added.   Knead a bit, then form into thin rolls and use a knife to cut into three-quarter inch pieces.  Boil in salted water until the gnocchi rise to the top.  Remove with a slotted spoon.

1/5 remaining raw pumpkin, peeled and cut into thin pieces
olive oil
4 garlic cloves
white wine

heat the garlic in olive oil, then add the pumpkin pieces and cook on medium heat, flipping the pieces occasionally until they begin to carmelize.  when a medium-brown fond has formed, deglaze with white wine, add salt and pepper to taste.  cover and allow the remaining wine to be absorbed into the pumpkin.

Pumpkin cream sauce:

1.5 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon flour
1 cup milk
1/2 cup pumpkin puree

melt  the butter in the pan, then add the flour, cook over medium high heat whisking with a small wire wisk continuously so that it doesn’t burn.  slowly add the milk as you continue whisking until the sauce reaches the consistency you’re looking for.  Salt and pepper to taste.  mix in pumpkin puree.

Combine sauce, gnocchi and cooked pumpkin pieces then transfer serving dish, finish with parmesean gratings, and serve.

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