My feelings on pumpkin can best be represented by a webcomic that Kate* (of Kate or Die!) created earlier this year. Autumn in the Midwest means that pumpkin pies, pumpkin beers, pumpkin cheesecakes, and anything else that could be spiced can be found on every corner. That’s autumn.
Let’s talk about stew. You can make it however you want. It can be vegan or full of salted meats. You can use almost any vegetable you’ve got laying around. Now, add it to a pumpkin. That’s basically what we’re doing here. Everyone has a favorite recipe for the fall. This is mine. Take it. Use it. Change it. Love it.
The result for this recipe is a warm, mushy pumpkin filled with savory pumpkin stew. It is served with scoops of pumpkin mash along with the stew itself. Your guests will think you are Martha Stewart, but it’s worth the confusion. It is delicious. All of the steps are below.
Pumpkin King: Pumpkin Stew
What you’ll need:
- 2 Onions (use your imagination, I like yellow ones)
- 3 Potatoes (cut into hunks that are easy to bite)
- A handful of mushrooms (mixed, if you’re feeling adventurous)
- 1 Carrot (chopped)
- 1 Bell pepper (chopped)
- 4 Cups water (use your judgement, it’s a slow cooker)
- 2 Beef/Chicken/Veggie bullion cubes (stick with the veggie ones if you want this to be considered vegetarian)
- 2 Teaspoons salt
- 1 Dash Black Pepper
- Some vegetable oil (enough to cover a pumpkin or two)
- 1 or 2 sugar pumpkins
Put the onions, potatoes, carrot, pepper, salt, pepper, bullion cubes, and water into a slow cooker. Turn it up to high. Cook this for three hours.
Add the mushrooms. Cook for an additional hour or two until the stew is stew-lookin. It doesn’t have to be perfect (it’s going to be cooked again soon).
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Cut open the pumpkin at the top like you are going to carve it. Take out the seeds and some of the pulp. The seeds can be saved and baked later if you want extra credit. For now, put the pumpkin in a heavy baking pan. Fill the pumpkin with the stew. Now it’s basically pumpkin stew. But we aren’t done yet.
Brush outside of the pumpkin with vegetable oil. It should shine. Bake this whole beautiful concoction in the preheated oven for at least an hour (or until it is tender). Once it is done, you can serve the stew directly from the pumpkin, scraping out some of the pumpkin meat with each serving. Your guests will love it. They might even love you. This would be the best time to ask them to help you move.
This is the time of year to write to the Great Pumpkin.On Halloween night, the Great Pumpkin rises out of his pumpkin patch and flies through the air with his bag of toys for all the children!
– Linus in It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!