Monday, November 22, 2010

Guest Blog-Suchada from Mama Eve-How to make Your Own Pumpkin Puree and Pumpkin Cookies

I am so excited, we have already had 3 awesome guest bloggers and this makes #4.  We want to give a HUGE thank you to Suchada for taking time to blog for us.  I am impressed with her cooking talents.  I have always wanted to make my own pumpkin puree but its one of those big cooking skills that just intimidates me.  Next year I am so going for it.  I hope you enjoy her post (as well as the beautiful pictures) as much as I did when I first read it.


P.S. I must say I had to chuckle to myself at the pictures of Suchada wearing a baby, surrounded by kids whipping up some yummy pumpkin cookies.  Looks like a scene straight out of my kitchen.


letting the kids help creates
beautiful life long memories
for everyone
I come from a family of foodies, something I’ve touched on in my blog, Mama Eve. When my relatives and I get together on vacations, we have a tendency to check out the local specialty grocery stores to see how they differ from place to place, and to find new ingredients to cook with. So it was only natural when an old high school friend came to visit from Las Vegas (with her daughter and twin boys!) that we cook together.
With two little ones, I don’t have a ton of time to spend in the kitchen, but I try to make things from scratch as often as I can. I subscribe to a Community Supported Agriculture co-op, and get a box of fresh, local, and seasonal fruits and vegetables every week. I can also order meats, nuts, and other staples. When they have extra of a particular crop, I can add them on to my order. They’re often cosmetically imperfect, but inexpensive and still of very high-quality. At the end of tomato season I ordered boxes of tomatoes for sauce, and in October I took advantage of the good price on pumpkins to get a lot to last for the season.
A few days before my friend arrived, I cooked and pureed all the pumpkins I had. Some were from my CSA, and others I got from a local pumpkin patch. They were all organic and different varieties, and they cooked up beautifully in the oven with just a bit of water to keep them from drying out.
  • Pre-heat oven to 350*
  • Wash outside of pumpkins
  • Cut in half, de-seed (save these for roasting!), and then cut in pieces that will fit easily into roasting pan.
  • Add a half-cup of water to the pan, or just enough to cover the bottom.
  • Place in oven until flesh is easily pierced with a knife, about an hour.
  • Remove from oven and allow to cool until pieces can be handled. Scoop out flesh into blender or food processor, and puree until smooth. (I actually used a stick blender, and it did the job easily and with little mess).
  • Pumpkin puree can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week, or frozen for up to six months.
Dulcia is a photographer, so I was pretty excited she would be able to document our pumpkin-cookie adventure. Cooking with children is ALWAYS an adventure because it’s a challenge to get them involved and excited about cooking, but still keep the kitchen somewhat intact. It’s even harder in my tiny space with two who are old enough to measure and stir, and three who wanted to be underfoot, but we got it done. My son (2-yrs-old) and her daughter (almost 4) traded off standing on a chair and a step, and sometimes shared the chair so they could both see what was going on inside the mixer. The little ones were content enough on the floor, but we had to watch out for them every time we moved! Even though all the kids were super-excited, they did really well.
Here’s the recipe for the Pumpkin Chocolate-Chip Cake-Cookies we made:
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon milk
  • The family that cooks together stays together
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
  1. Combine pumpkin, sugar, vegetable oil, and egg. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, ground cinnamon, and salt. Dissolve the baking soda with the milk and stir in. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture and mix well.
  2. Add vanilla, chocolate chips and nuts.
  3. Drop by spoonful on greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for approximately 10 minutes or until lightly brown and firm.
To get the kids involved, we counted out the measurement of each ingredient we would need, and then helped them scoop, level, and count. Then they got to stir! They also got to taste and smell each ingredient (yes, even the baking powder). My son will still smile and say something is good, even if it’s awful. And then he’ll turn and spit it out. Both kiddos loved being part of the action until they got some of the chocolate chips to try, and then the decided they’d had enough fun and wanted to run off and eat instead. So I added the chocolate chips myself, formed the cookies, and put it in the oven.
The result was delicious, especially after a day. The cookies are very cake-y, so having a day to rest helped the pumpkin flavor come out a bit more and made them a little more dense and chewy. They’re also REALLY good cooled down in the fridge. Overall, a successful, easy recipe that will definitely be part of my fall cooking from now on. I hope you enjoy them too!

Special thanks to Dulcia for her beautiful photographs, it was so hard to pick and choose which photos to use as they were all so amazing.   Check her out at Roaming Reflections Photography and book a session if you are lucky enough to live in the Las Vegas area.

If you have your own blog and a FB (or Twitter) fan page for that blog and would like to guest blog for us as well contact us at
`If you email us with a guest blog idea and don't hear back after a few days post on our FB wall.  We found out a few emails have been bouncing into the spam folder.  We are not ignoring you.


  1. I forgot to add that instead of canned pumpkin the recipe calls for, I substituted my fresh pumpkin puree. I hope others enjoy the cookies as much as we did!

  2. I made these cookies last Thanksgiving/Christmas holidays based on a recipe from Mama Eve, but used white chocolate chips instead. When I brought these delectable gems to work, they disapeared before 11 am...

    Thanks for posting your Pumpkin Puree recipe/process. We are so lucky here in the Pacific NW to have ready access to all kinds of local Farmer's Markets - I can't wait to make my own puree!

    I always wondered how they made Harry Potter's pumpkin juice.


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