October is pumpkin season and whether you are into carving or cooking with these emblems of autumn, there is no shortage of DIY recipes. A quick Pinterest search will have you drowning in drinks or challenging your creativity, but fortunately for foodies in the Westport area, we have Sue Smith, owner of Prime Health Style, to keep us grounded.
Sue’s recipe below for vegan pumpkin custard is simply divine. And what better place to pick up your pumpkins than at the Westport Farmers’ Market? Open from 10 to 2 this Thursday at 50 Imperial Avenue, stop by to pick up items for Sue’s recipe, visit with nearly 40 vendors, and stay for the chef demo and other activities (listed after Sue’s recipe).
Fresh Vegan Pumpkin Custard
Prep time: 20 minutes plus 1 hour baking and 2 hours chill time Serves 8
• 1 sugar pumpkin, about 3 pounds
• 2 14-oz. cans light coconut milk
• 2 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
• 2 teaspoons agar powder
• ¼ cup agave syrup
• 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons brown sugar
• 1 ¼ teaspoons ground cinnamon
• ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
• ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
• 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
• 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
• dash salt
1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F
2. Cut the pumpkin in half, stem to base. Scrape out seeds and strings (reserve seeds for roasting), then place the halves face down (skin side up) in a baking pan lined with parchment paper.
3. Bake in preheated oven about an hour or until tender. Cool for 10 minutes, then peel away skin.
4. Puree pumpkin meat in a high-speed blender or food processor until super-smooth, then place 1 ½ cups in a medium saucepan. (Freeze the remaining pumpkin for future use.)
5. Add all other ingredients to the pan, stir together, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.
6. Divide mixture among 8 ramekins. Cover and chill in refrigerator at least 2 hours, then serve.
Other activities this week at the market include a chef demonstration by Fleisher’s Craft Butchery at 10:15 to 11 (get there early for a seat at this popular event!); Get Growing activity for kids hosted by Whole Foods Market Westport; special guest vendor is Tynne Love, Raw Chef and Herbalist, and the Westport-Weston Chamber of Commerce as the featured non-profit of the day. For more information, including directions, visit westportfarmersmarket.com.
[Photo courtesy of www.primalpalate.com]