I have been known to take things very literally and therefore sometimes I am misled and disappointed. For example, the first time I went wine tasting. Descriptions of red wines poetically describing sweet blackberries with hints of cocoa and white wines as crisp peaches with notes of bright citrus. I thought I would be receiving an alcoholic fruit punch of sorts and what I got was wine. I don’t like wine. Then there was the Big Cippolini Let Down of 2009. I had excitedly made reservations at a new Italian restaurant named “Cippolini” because of my love for the squat, sweet little Italian onions, and was seriously bummed when I arrived and they were nowhere to be found on the menu. If the name of your restaurant is Taco Joe’s, do you not carry tacos? Anyway, I was duped again last week when I bought a Long Island cheese pumpkin at the farmer’s market. I clumsily carried the giant pumpkin back to my car with visions of cheesy pumpkin creations that would soon be bubbling away in my kitchen. After a quick google search for cheese pumpkin recipes, I found out they are called cheese pumpkins because of their shape, not because they taste like cheese. What do they taste like? They taste like pumpkins. Just like wine tastes like wine. The good thing is, this pumpkin can still be used in those delicious, savory, cheesy applications as well as sweet ones, which is good because I have 10 mason jars of fresh pumpkin puree in my freezer. Who doesn’t love a plate of pumpkin ravioli followed by some delicious pumpkin pie?
Barely Adapted from:
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 7 graham crackers, plus 2 or 3 for crumbling garnish
- 3 tablespoons water
- 2 1/4 teaspoons powdered gelatin (from one 1/4-ounce packet)
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 cups cold heavy cream
- Coat a 9-inch square metal baking pan ( alternately an 18 inch for a double batch which is pictured below) with cooking spray and line with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on all sides.
- Arrange graham crackers in 1 layer in pan, breaking them to fit if necessary.
3. Place water in a small bowl and sprinkle with gelatin on top. Let gelatin to soften for 3 minutes.
4. In a saucepan, simmer pumpkin puree, spice mixture and 1/2 cup sugar over medium heat until bubbles form at edge. Add gelatin mixture and stir until gelatin dissolves, about 1 minute. Let cool to room temperature completely otherwise it with melt the whip cream.
5. Beat cream and 2 tablespoons sugar until firm stiff peaks form.
6. With a rubber spatula, gently fold whipped cream into cooled pumpkin mixture.