How to prepare a pumpkin for pumpkin pie
According to eHow, this is how one prepares a pumpkin:
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Split the pumpkin in half and seed it.
3. Remove the stringy fibers by scraping the insides with a metal spoon.
4. Place the two halves cut side down in a roasting pan along with 1 c. water.
5. Bake the pumpkin until meltingly tender, about 90 minutes.
6. Scoop the flesh out of each pumpkin half.
7. Puree in a food processor fitted with a metal chopping blade.
8. Use as needed.
Oh, eHow! What a liar you are! Misleading poor, hopeful Thanksgiving cooks with your promises of easy pumpkinings. I simply cannot let that stand. I know that many of you prefer real pumpkin to canned pumpkin, but you might be dangerously confused by eHow’s instructions, so I offer unto you this, Smrt Mama’s Guide to Preparing a Pumpkin for Pumpkin Pie:
1. Preheat oven to 350 (or 325 on convection)
2. Place pumpkin on bamboo cutting board and attempt to cut widthwise with bladed edge of largest kitchen knife, leaving faint scratch.
3. Discover that pie pumpkin has approximate texture of bowling ball.
4. Try stabbing with point of kitchen knife, knocking slightly-knicked pumpkin into the sink.
5. Using serrated knife, saw at pumpkin for approximately five minutes, making deeper, but still faint, scratch.
6. Pick up pumpkin using two hands and dash to floor with a Hulk-like roar. Pumpkin will split into two neat lengthwise halves.
7. Attempt to remove seeds and fibers from pumpkin using hands.
8. Attempt to remove seeds and fibers from pumpkin using metal spoon.
9. Check kitchen for children. Swear.
10. Attempt to remove seeds and fibers from pumpkin using a sharp knife.
11. Remove seeds and fibers from pumpkin using alternating sharp knife, spoon, and the power of prayer.
12. Place pumpkin halves in pan. Realize the split unevenly and one half is held almost entirely out of the water by a single point of pumpkin flesh.
13. Remove pumpkin half from pan and hack at point until pumpkin is smooth enough to sit more-or-less flush in the pan.
14. Add cup of water to pan.
15. Realize one cup of water is no where near enough to even cover the bottom of the pan.
16. Add another cup of water.
17. Add a third cup of water.
18. Place pumpkin in not-yet-preheated-but-who-freaking-cares-at-this-point oven.
19. Wait for 90 minutes.
20. Check pumpkin flesh for “melting tenderness.” Pumpkin flesh will perhaps dent slightly when poked with spoon.
21. Return pumpkin to over for indeterminate amount of time.
22. Check pumpkin flesh for “melting tenderness.” Pumpkin flesh will be shriveled like mummy flesh.
23. Realized shriveled pumpkin flesh volume is inadequate amount for making pie. Dump pumpkin halves into trash.
24. Turn off oven, swearing.
25. Go to store and buy 15oz of canned pumpkin.
Now, good luck and enjoy your holiday cooking!
ETA: Ok, I will confess, that this isn’t exactly how it ended. Step #22 should actually be “remove pumpkin from oven, easily scrap flesh out and blend into 16 perfect ounces of pumpkin puree.” I was so sure it was going to fail, based on how it looked the first time I pulled it out of the oven, I admit to a wee bit of embellishment. Pumpkin success, after all. The shell (at least the half that wasn’t hacked to smithereens) hardened into a neat, half-pumpkin bowl that we’re going to use for…I dunno, something cool, I’m sure.
Proof of my perfect pumpkin puree