Five Unique Ways to Use Pumpkin (Not Including Pie)
Tis the season. Pumpkins are everywhere. From your local coffee shop to your front porch, it’s hard to get away from this most magical and versatile of all the iconic, seasonal foods.
Pumpkin is often associated with pies and other sweet items, but because it’s so diverse in its potential, pumpkins are great for savory applications, as well. Let’s go beyond pumpkin pie and take a look at five unique ways to use your pumpkins.
Butternut squash is one of the most popular of all the autumn soups, but with a little imagination, you don’t have to limit yourself to the butternut variety. Pumpkins are squashes, too. Consider puréeing your pumpkin to create a soup with similar butternut squash soup consistency, or dice it into chunks and mix it with chicken and poblano peppers for a more hearty menu choice.
There’s more to a pumpkin then just the meat. As any young kid will tell you, baking off the seeds is a big part of the fun. Consider spicing your seeds with more than just salt, though. Use cinnamon or curry powder for unique flavor profiles, and then add those seeds to your salads for added layers of taste and textures.
Pumpkin lends itself to creamy dishes, and there’s nothing more warm and creamy than a nice bowl of risotto. Mix pumpkin purée (or even diced pumpkin) into your recipes, and consider a complimentary sausage like andouille to pull out the flavors in the pumpkin. In reality, you don’t even have to use a bowl, though. Use a hollowed out pie pumpkin as your serving dish, and save the water in your dishwasher.
Here’s another classic Italian dish that you can transform with pumpkin. Add some finely diced pumpkin to your pork and beef ragu, and infuse your lasagna with a taste of fall. Combined with some classic Italian cheeses, you’ll surely have a hit on your hands.
BREADS & BARS
Looking for a healthier alternative to pumpkin pie? Try breads and bars. They’re just as tasty but contain less calories than the famous fall dessert. Breads and bars are also more versatile. Breads can be used in savory applications as part of a bread service, and bars can be made gluten free to accommodate wheat allergies.