Originally Posted by fatbloke
Carving and pie pumpkins ? There's a difference ?
I just don't get pumpkins and squashes...... the few times I've tasted them, they've always seemed bland as hell. I've been left with the presumption that they need a sh1tload of salt/sugar/spices or whatever to make them taste of anything (I'd happily be proved wrong - most likely that when I've tasted these, that they've just been badly prepared/cooked).
I'm wondering if its worth picking one up and seeing if I can find a decent recipe to try while they're in season..........
Pie pumpkins are much smaller, maybe twice the size of a grapefruit. I haven't found out firsthand yet, but they are supposed to be more flavorful than the "fullsize" pumpkins. Sweeter too.
Pumpkins are quite bland. The flavor is very subtle. Until you grill it. That definitely brings out the flavor. I am amazed at the difference. There are several recipes online for grilled pumpkin. I didn't add anything because I just wanted the pumpkin to come through. But I would suggest using some sort of mildly-flavored oil or even butter to keep the pumpkin from sticking to the grill.
Some of the pumpkin got a bit more done than the rest.charred pumpkin
, on Flickr
You can tell what kind of difference grilling makes. I didn't turn the pumpkin at all, the change on the back is just from the ambient heat of the grill.raw vs grilled
, on Flickr
I grilled all three carving pumpkins. But I decided to only use two. Between the puree and the juice from the pressure cooker two pumpkins added quite a bit of volume to the carboy. I don't want to add too much stuff to primary and end up with only half a jug of mead after filtering the solids out.
I ran the pumpkin through the pressure cooker to help soften it and break it down. That also made it peel like an egg. So getting rid of the outer skin was pretty easy. Then I ran it through the blender to puree it. Finally, I funneled it into the carboy.
I added a fair amount of pectic enzyme to the carboy. So I'm going to leave it alone til I get home from work tomorrow. Then I'll add the honey. The starter is bubbling away nicely. So I'll have some happy, healthy yeast to add. I'm rather confident in this recipe.
This is also the first time I've done anything other than a 1-gallon batch. And I already wish I had stepped up sooner. It isn't much more difficult to do 5-6 gallons than one gallon. But the payoff is much better. This time I know I'll have enough to let it actually age for a change instead of drinking it all within a month.
I'll post more pictures after I pitch the yeast tomorrow.