Even though they adorn our homes as decorations this time of year, pumpkins are so much more than that- they’re food! My goal for this autumn was to learn how to cook and enjoy pumpkins, and I have. Although I have not done the obvious of making pumpkin pie from the real thing, we have been enjoying it as a side dish with suppers (add a little butter and brown sugar, yum) and I’ve made some amazing muffins! They are so good, I decided to share it here. The original recipe came from a co-op flyer last year and they said it came from Farmer’s Market Foods. I have since adjusted it to our liking and hopefully to yours too!
Makes 20 regular muffins, but easily cut in half (which I do)
2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 c. whole wheat flour (feel free to sub. your ratio of flour types to your liking so long as you get 2 1/2 cups)
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
2 c. pumpkin puree (2 cups of the real stuff = one can of pumpkin)
3/4 cup oil (or subs. with 3/4 c. unsweetened apple sauce)
1/2 c. walnuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Sift together all dry ingredients in a large bowl, set aside. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs and then add pumpkin and stir until well combined. Add the oil gradually to the egg/pumpkin mixture, stirring well. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix- but don’t over mix. Fold in your walnuts.
Grease and flour (or use paper liners if you want) your muffin tins then fill 3/4 full. Bake 30 minutes or until tops are firm.
With all that delicious pumpkin, don’t forget about your seeds! Although they can be a pain to remove from the pile of slimy pumpkin guts, they are a highly nutritious (and really tasty and addictive) snack. Rinse and dry them thoroughly over night (sometimes it might take longer) then toss in olive oil and salt, spread on a baking sheet, and bake for one hour, tossing every 15-20 mins in a 250 degree F oven. We have made several different batches this year, experimenting with flavors. One we tossed in a little melted unsalted butter and sugar for something sweet, and another was a salt and crushed pepper mix (my husband favorite). We realized the sweet batch was a little blah, so we mixed it with the salted ones and I’ve really enjoyed the sweet and salty mix. After they have fully cooled, store them in an airtight container.
*Salt and pepper, salted, and sweet and salty mix*