Pumpkin, Two And A Half Ways – Sort Of

The school holidays are passing by in a blur of homemaking. We have spent many happy days at the allotment once again and the boys are thriving. I swear it’s like I’ve given them an “ent draft”  and they will start sprouting soon! We have made many, many days preparing, steaming and freezing vegetables. There is no more space in the freezer for vegetables which is a great sign. My hubby has a giant brew of homemade cider fermenting away with Christmas in mind. There are still recipes to be tested and there is always work to be done though and when I sat down to write up these recipes I realised that it was the day before Hallowe’en so I’d better make it a bumper recipe blogpost!

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This week I have a lovely new recipe for orange and pumpkin pancakes (also gluten and dairy free providing you’re careful with your ingredients) over on Flogastronomy so just click on the image below to be taken to that recipe. The 6-year-old demolished a few batches of these pancakes over the past fortnight!

Pumpkin Pancakes - Caitriona Redmond

It’s so simple to slice up a pumpkin, drizzle the slice with olive oil and rub over with a few spices like paprika and cumin, then slow roast the pumpkin slice (skin still on) in a fan oven at 170 degrees for an hour. The result is a soft, yielding treat that I eat with a spoon. I can’t really call it a recipe; more half a recipe. If you pick up a pumpkin on discount try roasting the slices. Roast the lot then scoop away the cooked flesh and leave it to cool before freezing it as a savoury puree. It’s a great treat!

Roasted Pumpkin - Wholesome Ireland - Irish Food Blog

I am, obviously, a massive fan of bacon. So sweet bacon crumble, made with 2 simple ingredients, has featured on my dinner table a lot. All you need is a decent sliced bacon that’s not too fatty and some quality honey. In my final recipe today, I couple the crumble with a savoury pumpkin pie that goes so well with a light green salad – or even kale if that takes your fancy.

Savoury Pumpkin Pie With Bacon Crumble - Wholesome Ireland - Irish Food Blog

Savoury Pumpkin Pie With Sweet Bacon Crumble (Serves 4)

Ingredients

  • 1 roll ready-made puff pastry
  • 250g of pumpkin puree (half a can if you use tinned puree but see above for a homemade recipe)
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 2 tablespoons of natural yoghurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of dried garlic / 1 whole clove of roasted garlic
  • 100g lean bacon
  • 2 tablespoons runny honey

Method

Preheat a fan oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease and dust a pie tin/dish before lining it with the pastry. Here I used individual tart cases and they are fine to use too. Blind bake the pastry in the oven for 20-25 minutes. You do this by covering the raw pastry with baking parchment, then filling this with baking beans or dried rice.

Once the pastry has been blind baked, remove the pastry from the oven and lift the baking beans out by picking up the baking parchment by the edges and popping it somewhere so they can cool safely.

In a large jug, combine the pumpkin puree, eggs, yoghurt and garlic with a fork until you get a smooth mixture. If you want to add seasoning, add a small amount of salt and pepper now – not too much salt as the bacon crumble is salty too!

Carefully pour the liquid into the pastry case, making sure to leave 2cm clear from the edge of the pastry. Bake in the oven until the filling has set – it depends on the size of pie you make but a large pie (rather than 4 individual ones) takes about 45 minutes – but do keep an eye on your pie!

To make the bacon crumble, cut the bacon into small chunks and place on a baking tray with a greaseproof lining. Cook in the preheated oven until the edges start to get hard (this takes about 20 mins). I normally lash it in at the same time as the pie. Remove and toss in the runny honey so that every piece of bacon is coated in the sticky goodness. Return the bacon to the oven for a further 15 minutes or so. Allow to cool a little before breaking up any large chunks of the sweet bacon to make it more “crumbly”.

Serve your savoury pumpkin pie with the bacon crumbled on top and a big dish of seasonal greens on the side.

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