Micole Khemarrica (khromat) wrote,
Micole Khemarrica
khromat

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My favorite season

I have always loved autumn, which marks the beginning of "The Food Season" for me.  It's the time of the year when I bake a lot as the yearly crop of pumpkins appears.  Soups, breads, pies, stews, ice cream ... pumpkin can be used in both sweet and savory ways, and the heirloom varieties of Cucurbita Moschata are fabulous for the task.   As always, I like to buy from my local farmer's market where more heirloom varieties are showing up.  This year, along with my usual purchase of Long Island Cheese Pumpkin, I got a Fairytale pumpkin, which is deep grey-green when immature and cures to a lovely buff orange.  I also picked up a Rouge d'Estampes which is sometimes called "Cinderella" but I'm noticing there's now a different variety also called Cinderella which isn't nearly as red and is more deeply ribbed.  I keep the some of the seeds of each to save, even if I don't get a chance to plant them in the following year (until I own a home instead of renting, I'm never sure if I'll be able to have a full growing season for them).  Here's a picture of this year's Holiday Display on our front steps:

Pumpkins on my doorstep

Except for the Munchkin extra-mini pumpkins (light orange, slightly flattened, ribbed), the Tiger mini (mottled orange, flattened, strong ribs), and the Howden (biggest pumpkin), all these pumpkins are edible, with all the flattened heirloom types being excellent for baking.  I'll likely use the Sugar Pie (deep orange, round, smooth skinned) and the Casper (pale white, round, faint ribbing) for Amerind-style stews (I got a couple of recipe books on Native American cuisine).  I'll have to taste the Lil Pump Ke Mon (small, yellow-white with variable striping, flattened, ribbed) before I cook them -- mini pumpkins aren't known for being good cooking, but I've seen some gardener commentary that indicated these are.  The mini Wee-Be-Littles (bright light orange, round, smooth) were specifically bred to be edible and I might try stuffing them.

This year I'm going to try selling my pies.  I have ordered some shipping containers to handle mailing a few out but mostly I'll be making pies for the local Bay Area for "delivery".  I've yet to find out the yield for this year's pumpkins, but as C. Moschata varieties have dense, smooth, fiberless flesh that's naturally very sweet, I usually get a pretty high yield of puree (average is 2 cups puree per pound of raw).  We'll see how the Rouge d'Estampes will do (in spite its flat shape, it's not C. Moschata but actually a variety of C. Maxima).

If I do ship out pies, I'll have to figure out a way to have the shipping box sent back to me -- I might do a "subscription service" where the added cost of the box becomes a value: the customer sends me back the box and I make more pie to ship back to them.  Would anyone be interested in that?

Tags: cooking, pumpkin
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  • 11 comments

  • Still Alive

    Just a brief message -- I'm still alive, and been busy with school and my health, as usual. Currently visiting friends I haven't seen in…

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    Just up for a little air... Finished my second quarter of school and the toughest accounting class of the cycle of three I need for my Business…

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