pumpkin mash

little pumpkins

Pumpkins deserve more attention than the pies.

This year, we’re making a pumpkin mash, inspired by Marcus Samuelsson’s recipe. Locally grown pumpkins, roasted sweet potatoes, garlic and shallots, a hint of sweetness. What could be wrong?

We had this idea, inspired by a question on Twitter. What about a savory pumpkin custard? Sounds good to me. I might try making the pumpkin custard recipe on the back of the Libby’s can. (Yep, we’re still using this.) Instead of evaporated milk, I might try some evaporated goat’s milk. Substitute all the sweet spices with garlic and sage, a bay leaf, some Parmesan cheese. It could be great.

(It could be awful, too. Without making it, how will I know? I don’t think it will stink, however.)

If we had more sweet potatoes in the house, we’d be making our friend Jess’s sweet potato crisp for the big meal. (I’m thankful I was able to read her piece before the day.)

Enjoy it all, whatever you eat.

Pumpkin/Sweet Potato Mash, adapted from The Soul of a New Cuisine

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
3 shallots, peeled and sliced
4 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced thin
3-inch-piece ginger, peeled and sliced
2 cinnamon sticks
1 tablespoons brown sugar
5 sprigs fresh thyme, stems removed and fine chopped
2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch cubes
2-pound pumpkin, peeled, seeded, and cut into 2-inch cubes
2 cups chicken stock (or vegetable stock)
2 cups milk (cow’s milk, soy milk, or rice milk)
pinch nutmeg
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 chives, fine chopped

Preparing to mash. In a deep pot on medium heat, melt the butter. Add the shallots, garlic, ginger, cinnamon sticks, brown sugar, thyme leaves, and cook, stirring, until the sugar melts, about 3 minutes. Throw in the sweet potatoes, pumpkin cubes, chicken stock, and milk of your choice. Bring them all to a simmer. Reduce the heat and cook until the potatoes and pumpkin yield to your fork, about 30 minutes.

Making the mash. Drain the pumpkin and sweet potatoes, saving 1 cup of the liquid. Throw away the ginger and cinnamon sticks. In a large bowl, mash the sweet potatoes and pumpkin. Pinch in the nutmeg and salt. Taste. Season more, if necessary. Splash in a bit of the cooking liquid and stir, for an even texture. Before serving, sprinkle with the chives.

Serves 6.