Pumpkin Everything

            “Live Love Pumpkins” is printed on the shirts they sell at the Pumpkin Festival in Morton, Illinois, which is the pumpkin capital of the world. 95 percent of the pumpkins processed in the U.S. are grown in Morton.  Who would have thought there is a pumpkin capital? Imagine the passion for pumpkins during this time of year in Morton. The festival includes activities such as a parade, pumpkin carving, pumpkin launch, pumpkin eating, and of course the deliberation of the best pumpkin beer. This festival is perfect for any pumpkin lover. They get creative with their products by making anything from pumpkin ice cream to pumpkin chili. Below are some ways you can use pumpkins this season.

Five-Minute Smoky Pumpkin Hummus

Ingredients

  • 1 15- ounce can chickpeas drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon McCormick Chipotle Chile Pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds optional

Instructions

  1. Place all the ingredients (except the pumpkin seeds) into a food processor and blend until smooth. If your hummus is a little thick, thin it out with a little more honey or add a little olive oil or lemon juice.
  2. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with a sprinkle of smoked chipotle powder and pumpkin seeds. Serve with pretzels, popcorn, veggies, pita, etc.

 

Pumpkin Chili

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 bell pepper any color, diced
  • 1 jalapeño minced
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 14.5 ounce cans fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 15 oz can pumpkin puree (NOT pie filling)

Instructions

  1. In a large dutch oven heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Brown the onion and garlic for a few minutes until they start to develop color. Add in the bell pepper and jalapeño and cook until soft.
  2. Crumble in the ground beef and brown. Once browned add in the tomatoes, broth, and spices. Simmer 5 minutes then add in the pumpkin. Continue to cook for 10 minutes to allow flavors to meld together.
  3. Divide between 6 bowls and garnish with cilantro.

 

Pumpkin Ice Cream

Ingredients

  • Makes 1 generous quart
  • 14-ounce can full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 cup puréed cooked pumpkin
  • ½ cup soymilk or other nondairy milk
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger

Instructions

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
  2. Transfer to an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s directions.
  3. Combine all of the ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
  4. Transfer to an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s directions.

 

Baked Parmesan Pumpkin Fries

Ingredients

  • 1 small pie pumpkin
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt

Instructions

  1. Using a sharp knife, slice the pumpkin in half. Scoop out the seeds and pulp (reserve the seeds for roasting).
  2. Slice the two ends off of each half of pumpkin. Then slice each half in half again. Using a sharp vegetable peeler, peel the pumpkin pieces. Then slice the peeled pieces into 1/4″ fries.
  3. Place the pumpkin fries in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Let the fries soak for at least 30 minutes, but preferably overnight.
  4. When fries are finished soaking, preheat the oven to 425°. Line two or more baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
  5. Drain the fries, and then pat dry with paper towels.
  6. Fill a large zip-top bag with the dried fries, and then top with cornstarch. Close the bag and shake to cover the fries.
  7. Place the fries in a large bowl, drizzle with the olive oil and then toss to coat with your hands. Sprinkle on the paprika and garlic powder and toss again until well-coated. Spread fries in a single layer on the prepared baking sheets.
  8. Bake in preheated oven for 10-15 minutes, flipping once halfway through, until the fries are crisp and golden brown.
  9. While the fries are baking, toss together the cheese, parsley, and sea salt. As soon as the fries come out of the oven, sprinkle on the Parmesan mixture.

 

Pumpkin Pancakes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup  FlapJacked Cinnamon Apple Protein Pancake & Baking Mix 
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup fat free milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Large Egg

Instructions

  • In medium bowl, combine dry ingredients.
  • In another bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Add in dry ingredients and mix well. Let sit 3-5 minutes while you turn griddle onto low heat (275 - 285 degrees). Batter will start to form bubbles and thicken.
  • Use a 1/4 measuring cup to pour batter into 12 pancakes (may need to cook in two batches). Let cook until no more bubbles are forming in the center and the edges look dry.
  • Flip and cook other side until golden brown. (About 3 minutes per side.) ENJOY!

Here are some ideas and recipes to get started on, so get out there and show your pumpkin love!