With Thanksgiving over the plentiful supply of sugar pumpkins in my local grocery is coming to an end so I decided to take some time to make and freeze some pumpkin puree for use over the winter. The process is pretty simple and it tastes so much better than using pumpkin puree from a can in recipes.
To start I scrubbed the outside of my sugar pumpkins, sliced them in half, and then scooped out the seeds to save for toasting later. For cleaning out the membrane I usually use a melon baller which makes the scraping easier. After prepping the pumpkins I placed them cut side down in a greased baking dish and put them in a 350 degree oven.
After baking the pumpkins until the flesh was soft (about an hour) I took them out of the oven and then scooped out the flesh when the pumpkins were cool enough to handle. Using a potato masher I pureed the pumpkin until it had a smooth consistency. Since the puree is a little watery I lined a colander with some cheesecloth and let the puree drain for a bit before packing it. Since most of my recipes call for two cups of pumpkin puree I measured out two cup portions into freezer bags and stored them in the freezer. Now I am all set for a winter of making pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread and pumpkin soup.