Thursday, October 28, 2010

Differences in Pumpkin

All that pumpkin is finally done and in the freezer.
We got a total of 27 packages of pumpkin puree; each package roughly equaling one can of pumpkin.
Almost all of it was the type I'm most familiar with;
dull orange outside,
bright orange inside.
But then there was the mammoth pumpkin hubby bought this year.
Grandma's in the background, scraping the other pumpkin
off it's skin.
The inside isn't as bright an orange and not as
stringy. It was more of a spongy consistancy.
I did the mammoth and the smaller of the two really big
 ones hubby bought on the same day. On the outside
they were about the same size. If anything, the mammoth
was slightly larger. You can compare the size in this picture:
The other one I was working on is just behind the mammoth on the left.
This was the puree from the dull orange one - before draining.
And this was the puree from the mammoth - also before draining.
It's kind of hard to tell from these photos, but the puree from the
mammoth is a little paler than the other.  It's not as big a difference
 as I would have expected though, given the color of the flesh.
These are the seeds. The mammoth seeds are on the left.
We haven't tried to roast the mammoth seeds yet.
After draining, this is what we ended up with.
The two on the left are from the mammoth.
There are five on the right from the dull one. 
The one at the top is a mix of both.
Obviously a big difference in yeild.
So, pros and cons of the mammoth.
1)The skin is considerably thinner which made it MUCH easier to cut up. I do suspect that the thinner skin would mean it wouldn't keep as long in cold storage, but since I don't keep them that way it didn't matter.
2)The interior, around the seeds, was spongy, not stringy which made it quite a bit easier to clean out.
3)The puree was a silkier consistency. The puree on the others is very fine and I never have strings in anything I cook, but this was even finer.
1)The thinner skin actually made it a little harder to deal with once it was cooked. Little bits of skin kept tearing off and ending up in with the flesh.
2)There were small, hard bits mixed all in the flesh that didn't cook down and had to be removed by hand before draining.
3)It was much harder to get the seeds out of the spongy mass of "guts" than it is to get seeds out of the stringy kind.  Since my hubby likes roasted pumpkin seeds this is definately a down side.
4)And the biggest con of all, the yeild.  All that work only resulted in two and a half packages of pumpkin puree.
Any time I may have saved on the cutting and scraping was more than nullified by the time I spent picking hard spots and bits of skin out of the puree. I could have run it through a fine mesh sieve, but that is just about as time consuming.  Then there was all the additional time I spent separating out the seeds.  There wasn't much difference in the taste of the two, and I can't imagine there will be much difference in how they cook up, but hubby wants me to bake a pie with each just to see.  He doesn't really care for pumpkin pie, he prefers sweet potato, so he wondered if the mammoth would make a pie that was more like sweet potato. I told him I'd make some for him to try, but I would rather bake a sweet potato or two than mess with one of those pumpkins again.
I'm willing to bet we won't buy another mammoth pumpkin, but I am interested in trying one of those gray ones.
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  1. You've done a mommoth job here! Looking forward to reading some of the recipes you use it in,.

  2. Thanks.
    I'd like to try to do the two different pumpkin pies this weeked, but we have a lot of work to do before Grandma's birthday party next week, so it may have to wait.