Sugar Pie Pumpkin Crème Brûlée

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I love this simple and elegant dessert as an alternative to the usual pumpkin pie for the holidays. It is deeply satisfying to roast your own pumpkin and as a bonus, you’ll have leftover purée to make soup or maybe some warm pumpkin bread. You may, however, substitute organic canned pumpkin in a pinch.

Ingredients

Preparation

For the pumpkin purée:

Up to 2 days in advance: Preheat oven to 375° F. Cut the pumpkin in half crosswise and place it, cut side down, on a baking sheet. Bake for about 40 minutes, or until tender when pierced with a fork. Allow to cool, scoop out the seeds, and then scoop out the flesh of the pumpkin and puree until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.

For the custard crèmes:

Up to 1 day in advance: Preheat oven to 350° F. In a saucepan, heat the cream to a simmer. Combine the egg yolks and 1/2 cup of sugar in a large bowl and beat well. Add about a quarter of the hot cream to the yolks to temper them and then pour in the rest of the cream. Stir in the vanilla, spices and 1/2 cup of the pumpkin purée.

Fill 6 to 8 ovenproof ramekins with the mixture and place in a casserole dish. Pour boiling water around the dishes to a depth of about 1 inch. Bake for about 20 minutes or until very lightly set (the custard should still “shimmy” slightly). Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

For the brûlée:

Up to 1 day in advance: Preheat oven to 350° F. In a saucepan, heat the cream to a simmer. Combine the egg yolks and 1/2 cup of sugar in a large bowl and beat well. Add about a quarter of the hot cream to the yolks to temper them and then pour in the rest of the cream. Stir in the vanilla, spices and 1/2 cup of the pumpkin purée.

Just before serving: Sprinkle the custards with the remaining sugar, distributing it evenly over the surface. Place under a broiler until the sugar caramelizes or use a torch.

Notes

Note: If using a broiler to caramelize the sugar on top, place the ramekins in a casserole dish and surround with ice cubes to keep them cool.

Recipe by Lynne Vea, PCC Chef

Source: PCC Fresh, November 2009

Lynne Vea

ABOUT OUR CHEF: Lynne Vea

Lynne Vea is a graduate of the Executive Chef Program at Le Cordon Bleu, Paris and has been cooking with PCC Natural Markets since 2001. Featured on King-5’s "Gardening with Ciscoe," she demonstrates easy and delicious recipes using seasonal ingredients.

Lynne is an admired PCC Cooks instructor, teaching a variety of popular PCC Cooks classes throughout the year.

She loves to collect old cookbooks, hunt for wild berries, and cook seven-course dinners where the guests are encouraged to dance and cavort between courses.

Find more recipes from Lynne.

Learn more about our recipes. View guidelines »

More about: cream, eggs, pumpkin, spices

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winter squash

A few winter squash varieties

Can't decide which kind of winter squash to buy? Here's a brief guide to help you make your way through the colorful maze:

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Spaghetti — Smooth yellow rind and round to football shaped. The deeper the color, the sweeter the squash. The cooked flesh separates into long strands, like its namesake. It has a mellow, earthy flavor.

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