SMALL SUGAR PUMPKIN RECIPES

A few days ago, I was walking back from the post office to home when I stopped at my local flower shop trading on the side of the road. I like stopping there. He is not selling a large varieties of flowers and trees but everything he sells is seasonal!

CUCURBITA PEPO

My attention has been caught by small uniform round pumpkins with orange skin, small sugar pumpkin or from their Latin name Cucurbita pepo.

Pumpkin season has started a few days ago as Halloween’s day is approaching rapidly.

At this time of the year, expect to carve pumpkins to decorate the front of your house, some types of pumpkins are great to create delicacies.

So, it’s always tempting to get one of these good looking pumpkins. Not only their shape is great but their flesh too. Orange flesh, sugary sweet flavour and smooth texture. Flesh is said to be one of the best varieties for making pies, it is also good for baking, soups and casseroles.

THE SOUP

When I was working at Trinity Restaurant in Clapham Common, I used to make this soup through the Autumn season.

We used to receive a net of pumpkins every 3 days. Our jos was to take the top off the pumpkins, scoop their flesh out, to reserve the seeds for a later use and finally to make a soup.

It’s one of my favourite soups. It’s a rich soup including butter, cream, milk and a good vegetable stock.

When the seeds are being separated from the flesh, slice 1/2 an onion and sweat it with butter and salt.

Add the pumpkin flesh and cook it in a pan, lid on, rapidly to keep the max of flavour. Stir the soup quite often to make sure that it’s not going to catch on the bottom of the pan. The soup base should be cooked uniformly.

At this stage, add one part of vegetable stock for 1/4 part of cream and 1/4 part of milk. Bring to the boil and blend the soup straight away.

Adjust seasoning. Add a splash of lemon juice and pour the soup into the small pumpkin sugar shell. Top the soup with the pumpkin seeds washed and toasted.

Here we go, a fast and an easy soup to make to impress your guests at home. Something a bit more special than a simple soup and using all the pumpkin from shell to seeds.

SOME READING

Please take time to read the following articles. You will find some interesting information about the large varieties of pumpkins available. From curving to cooking, the list is endless.

30 different types of pumpkins-Facts and Pictures

Mr-Fothergills.co.uk

Cucurbit pepo

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CONTACT

As Christmas is just around the corner, you might certainly started to create your menu or even thinking to hire a private chef to look after your party. If so, please be in touch with me by clicking on the link below.

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tagliatelle with tomato sauce

Using a pasta machine is always an exciting moment. Rolling the pasta through the rollers and changing the machine setting by one notch, passing the pasta through the rollers again, seeing it get thinner and thinner. It sounds like music to my ears! I love making pasta. I find it quite therapeutic. That’s the best way to enjoy a glass of wine and to think about your day or what’s coming up for the rest of the week. Pasta in different shapes and sizes, different flavours but at the end of the day, the result is a great satisfaction. I leave it to you now to try it. Ciao!

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE PASTA DOUGH: 250grs 00 flour; 2 beaten eggs; ½ teaspoon turmeric powder; 1 pinch of salt ; 2 tablespoons of water

FOR THE TOMATO SAUCE: 400g cherry tomato quartered; 2 grated garlic cloves; Salt, Pepper

Mix the dry ingredients together, flour, salt, turmeric powder in a mixing bowl.
Whisk the 2 eggs in a different bowl.
Combine the 2 beaten eggs into the dry mix until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
If the mix feels too dry add a bit of water until the dough comes together. The pasta dough must be homogeneous.
Knead it briskly for one minute to form a ball shape.
Wrap in cling film and leave to rest for 30 minutes in the fridge.

Use a pasta machine and start to roll out the dough by decreasing the roller setting until a thin sheet. This will take time but you’ll get faster as you get used to it.
Fold the sheet of pasta from both sides into the middle, cut it with a sharp knife into thin strips approximately 1cm wide. Try to get them all the same as it will help with the cooking evenly.

After rolled and cut, hang your tagliatelle on wooden spoons to dry for about half an hour, in the meantime, time to make your sauce…

Make the tomato sauce by cutting the cherry tomatoes into quarters.
Put them in a bowl and grate in the two garlic cloves.
Pour 50ml of olive oil in a pan, add the tomatoes and garlic and cook it on a medium heat.
Season with salt.

Use a whisk break down the tomatoes to release the natural juice. Bring the temperature down and keep simmering until a thick consistency.
Blanch the pasta in boiling water for a few minutes until cooked al dente. Drain the pasta and add straight away to the tomato sauce.
Serve with grated fresh parmesan on top.