I love fall for many reasons, but one of my favorite parts of fall is the harvest. Fresh squash, apples, potatoes, garlic, and. . . pumpkins! I have especially enjoyed making all sorts of pumpkin recipes over the years. Every where you turn it seems you see a new product with pumpkin spice--from lattés to lip balm!
With only 49 calories per cup, pumpkin is loaded with vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, potassium, and more! Sorry to break it to you, fresh pumpkin is what is loaded with these amazing nutrients...probably not the "pumpkin" in the coffee shop pumpkin spiced latté. Fresh pumpkin puree also has fiber and protein! This health food is tasty and versatile.
Join with me in celebrating the harvest with these two delicious pumpkin recipes--which just might hit your craving for pumpkin spice :)
The secret to these recipes is to roast your own pumpkin (super easy to do-- instructions in the first recipe), rather than buying the canned version. Remember to dehydrate or roast and eat the seeds if you cook a whole pumpkin-- pumpkin seeds are a nutritional powerhouse!
Fresh Pumpkin Spiced Soup
Serves 4 - Original recipe modified from Genius Kitchen
- 2 tablespoons organic, grass-fed butter
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- organic apple, peeled and diced
- 2 cups fresh pumpkin (roasted and diced, see note below)
- 1 tablespoon sage leaf
- 3 cups chicken stock or bone broth
- 1 cup coconut cream
- Mineral salt & freshly ground black pepper
- Dash of cinnamon and nutmeg
- Melt butter in a pot over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, apple, and sage and sauté until all are tender. Add roasted pumpkin and cook about 8 to 10 minutes
- Puree the mixture in a blender or food processor (might need to add a little broth in the blender). I prefer not to blend all of my soup to keep some of chunky textures. Return the puree to the pot, add the chicken stock, cinnamon, nutmeg, and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Add the coconut cream and simmer for 5 more minutes, lowering the heat if necessary so it does not boil. Add salt and pepper to season to taste.
- Dish up the soup and serve immediately.
Note: Roasting a Pumpkin
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut whole pumpkin in half. Discard seeds or reserve for dehydrating or roasting. Place pumpkin on a baking sheet (I cover my baking sheet with parchment paper), drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Roast in oven until tender but not falling apart, about 30 to 40 minutes. Let cool, peel away skin, and dice.
Mini Pecan Pumpkin Pies
Makes 12 or 24 Mini-Pies - Recipe adapted from Sunny Anderson, Food Network
- Nonstick coconut or 100% extra virgin olive oil cooking spray
For the dough:
- 1/4 cup pecans
- 1/4 cup organic cane sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon mineral salt
- 3/4 cups organic all-purpose flour, plus extra for shaping dough
- 6 tablespoons grass-fed butter, ice-cold
- 2 to 3 tablespoons ice water
For the filling:
- 1 free-range egg, plus 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 cup organic blue agave
- 1 tablespoon organic cane sugar
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree plus 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice*
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 cup pecans, chopped plus 24 halves for garnish
NOTE: Special equipment needed- 2 (12-cup) mini muffin tins –or- 1 (12-cup) regular muffin tin
For the dough:
- In a blender or food processor, pulse the pecans, sugar, salt, and flour, until the nuts are ground and the ingredients are combined. Add in the butter and pulse until dough resembles coarse meal. Slowly pour in the ice water until the dough comes together.
- Remove from blender or processor bowl to a clean work surface sprinkled with flour.
- Form the dough into a ball and divide evenly into 12 or 24 pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and evenly press into each cup, until the bottom is covered. If the dough is sticky, dip your finger in flour first. Bake until crusts are very golden, 15 to 18 minutes, until the crusts are very golden. Check occasionally to make sure they don't get too brown.
For the filling:
- In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolk, agave, sugar, pumpkin puree and vanilla. Stir in the chopped pecans.
- Remove the dough from the oven and spoon 1 tablespoon of the filling into each cup. Top each with 1 whole pecan half.
- Return the pans to the oven and continue baking, for 12 to 15 minutes more, until the pumpkin filling is set. Allow to cool completely before removing from the pans.
* Homemade pumpkin pie spice: 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon, 2 teaspoons ground ginger, 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg, 1 ½ teaspoons ground allspice and 1 ½ teaspoons ground cloves. Mix the spices together in a small bowl and take a little whiff.
Hope you enjoy these delicious fall recipes (and the wonderful smells that will fill your home!)
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Disclaimer: This article is not intended to diagnose or treat any illnesses or disease. Please always check with your doctor before beginning any new nutritional or fitness program or before making any nutritional/fitness changes.