Prior to last weekend, I had never cooked a pumpkin in my life. I’d cooked with canned pumpkin purée–pumpkin chocolate chip muffins are the best and only pumpkin flavored thing I would eat. But it wasn’t until I was in Germany that I tried the pumpkin dish that changed my opinion on the squash. It was this creamy pumpkin curry sauce served over German noodles. It might sound weird (curry with pasta?), but it was delicious and I knew I had to recreate it back home.
Armed with one of the first sugar pie pumpkins I could find (sugar pie pumpkins are smaller than their Jack-o-Lantern making cousins, and not as stringy), I set off to make my first ever curry and cook with my first ever raw pumpkin. What could go wrong, right? Luckily, everything went swimmingly 🙂 And, since I have challenged everyone to try making one non-pumpkin-spiced savory pumpkin dish this month, I thought I ought to give you at least one resource, so I included my rough recipe below.
One tip I heard for cooking with pumpkin is to cut it with a serrated knife so that the knife doesn’t slip and cut you. I agree wholeheartedly with that–cutting a pumpkin is tough stuff. So, allot about 15 to 20 minutes for cutting up your pumpkin. But, honestly, cutting the pumpkin is the hardest part. Peeling is a snap–you don’t even need to cut it. Mashing the pumpkin is actually kind of fun–therapeutic, almost 😉 So, here is how it went. (Notice that there is no picture of the final product–it was too good, we ate it all :))
From the third and fourth photos, you can tell that the pumpkin is only slightly darker when it came out of the oven after it was roasted. Also, that last photo is just the pumpkin mashed up after the broth was added. As you might imagine, cream helped to make it creamier and this ended up being a creamy rather than chunky sauce. If you prefer chunks, don’t mash is up as thoroughly. But, without further ado, here is the recipe–best of luck on making your own savory pumpkin dish, whatever recipe you choose to make.
Creamy Pumpkin Curry Sauce
- 1 sugar pie pumpkin
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 medium white onion, diced up
- 1 cup chicken broth (vegetable broth would work, too)
- 1/2 to 1 cup of heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon curry powder (depending on your taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- casserole pan
- serrated knife
- sauce pan
- potato masher
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Wash the pumpkin and dry it off. Cut the pumpkin down the middle with the serrated knife and clean out the insides with a spoon (you can reserve the seeds for roasting). Then cut it up into smaller, manageable pieces. Put the pieces into a casserole dish, skin side facing up. Add about 1/4 inch of water to the bottom. Put it in the oven to roast for about an hour, or until the pumpkin flesh is soft.
Drain the and allow the pumpkin to cool somewhere off to the side while you begin to sauté the onion in the butter in the sauce pan over medium to medium-high heat. When the pumpkin is cool enough to handle, begin to pull off the skin. It should come right off, but you might want to wedge a butter knife between the skin and the flesh to start it more easily.
Once the onions are limp and soft, add in the peeled pumpkin and half of the broth. Begin to mash the pumpkin up with the potato masher. Add more broth to thin and smooth out the pumpkin pseudo-puree. Turn the heat down to medium low and begin to add the cream slowly. *
Stir in the spices, salt and pepper to taste. Serve it over rice or as a pasta sauce (if you are weird like me).
Alternate ideas: If you thin it out further with broth, the sauce would easily make a delicious pumpkin curry soup. Or if you want to go a more traditional pasta route, after the (*), instead of adding spices, you could use the pumpkin mixture as a ravioli filling, served with a cream sauce or even a pesto (I once had pesto spread on a pumpkin bread and it was pretty good).
What do you think? Do you have a favorite pumpkin recipe? Feel free to link in the comments! 🙂