Pumpkin and spice


WE do not need a season to enjoy pumpkin, for us it is available year-round. And now thanks to our farmers we can enjoy a variety, from crapaud or rough-skin, regular and now the lovely squash as well. Pumpkin is a tradition in our country. It’s added to peas, pelau, veggie roti, pepper-sauce, as much as it is enjoyed grilled, smashed, and gratinée and as a star ingredient in pone.

But how many of us actually take it a step further and use this delightful squash in baked items? Adding pumpkin to your baked treats will result in a moist and tender crumb. It is very versatile because of its soft flavour, and as a result it marries well with warming spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, mace and ginger.

So this weekend when you are picking up some pumpkin to complement your meals next week, give it a try in your baked treats.


1 lb cassava, grated

1 dried coconut, grated

¼ lb pumpkin, grated

1 cup granulated sugar

2 tbs butter

1 tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp allspice

¼ tsp nutmeg

⅛ tsp black pepper

1 tsp bitters

¼ cup water

Preheat oven to 350F

In a mixing bowl, combine cassava, coconut pumpkin, and sugar.

Rub butter into mixture until it becomes like breadcrumbs.

Add cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, black pepper.

Combine bitters with water and add to mixture, stir well, mixture should be moist.

Grease an 8-inch square baking pan, spoon mixture into pan and press down making it smooth on the surface.

Bake for 45 to 50 minutes until nicely browned and mixture starts to pull away from the sides of the pan.

Remove from oven and cool in pan.

Cut into squares.

Serves about 10 to 12

Pumpkin scones


2 cups all-purpose flour

⅓ cup brown sugar

½ tsp cinnamon

1 tsp ginger powder

¼ tsp nutmeg

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

½ cup butter, cold

⅓ to ½ cup unflavoured yoghurt

1 tsp vanilla

½ cup grated, puréed pumpkin

Preheat oven to 400F

Grease/line a baking tray.

Place flour, sugar, spices, baking powder and soda into a mixing bowl, cut in butter until it’s the size of small peas.

Stir yoghurt with vanilla and pumpkin add to flour.

Mix with a wooden spoon just until combined.

Turn onto a lightly-floured surface, gently knead a few times.

Pat down to about ¾-inch thickness, cut into triangles, place on baking tray.

Brush with some evaporated milk and sprinkle with sugar.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until risen and golden.

Makes 8

Pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes

½ cup butter

1¼ cup granulated sugar

3 eggs

1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp nutmeg

1 tsp ginger powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

¾ tsp salt

1 cup pumpkin purée

1 tsp vanilla

⅓ cup milk

¾ cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350F

Cream butter with sugar until light, add eggs one at a time and beat well.

Combine all dry ingredients.

Combine pumpkin purée with milk and vanilla.

Add flour alternately with pumpkin mixture, fold in chocolate chips.

Spoon batter into paper baking cases and bake for 30 to 35 minutes until risen and brown.

Makes 12

Coconut pumpkin ginger muffins

2/3 cup milk

1 tbs vinegar

2 eggs

⅓ cup melted butter

1 tbs grated ginger

2/3 cup brown sugar

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tbs baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp grated tonka bean or nutmeg

2 cups grated uncooked pumpkin

¾ cup grated coconut

½ cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 375F

Combine milk with vinegar and let stand for 10 minutes.

Beat eggs until frothy, add butter and curded milk.

In a mixing bowl combine ginger, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, tonka.

Add pumpkin, coconut and walnuts.

Pour in wet ingredients and stir gently, do not over mix.

Spoon batter into paper-lined muffin cups to about ½-full.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden and a tester inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Cool on racks.

Makes 12



"Pumpkin and spice"

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