|Pumpkin Stuffed with Everything Good|
Thanksgiving is around the corner. Just 29 days until we stuff ourselves with an endless smorgasbord of food and drink, football and family. It also marks the traditional start of the holiday season.
But I am as much a Holiday Diva as a Culinary Diva. So our holiday season starts this weekend when I send Mrs. Claus’ helper in an eighteen foot U-Haul truck to pick up Christmas decorations from a double-wide storage unit. I know this may seem early, but it takes about three weeks to fully decorate our house and we like to have everything finished by Thanksgiving. Over the Thanksgiving weekend we celebrate and give thanks for completion of this indomitable task by treating ourselves to exciting holiday dinners, seasonal cocktails, fine wines and the viewing of our favorite Christmas movies.
|Though it looks like a lot of chopping, prep time is really pretty quick|
This week’s French Friday’s with Dorie challenge is really timely and produces a veritable showstopper of a dish. Pumpkin Stuffed with Everything Good is the holidays personified. It is like a beautiful package stuffed with a bounty of delectable treasures, and the pumpkin makes a wonderful serving vessel.
|Cream is added to the ingredients|
|Mix ingredients until moistened|
Pumpkin Stuffed with Everything Good is truly versatile. It can serve as an accompaniment to the ubiquitous turkey, even substituting for that glutinous glob that frequently masquerades as stuffing. It can be used as a starch substitute with virtually any meat, fish or fowl. Or it can be used as an entrée by exchanging rice for the bread ingredient. If you have vegetarian friends and are at a loss as to what to serve, leave the bacon out and this dish will wow them. Even Sasha, the Wonder Dog, couldn’t get enough of Pumpkin Stuffed with Everything Good.
|Stuff pumpkin with mixture|
|Top pumpkin with topand place in oven for 90 minutes|
The secret to this dish may be in the slow roasting (2 hours). The flavors meld together creating a graduated intensity in flavor. I used a combination of Gruyere and Emmenthal cheeses to good effect. These cheeses provided a richness and nutty flavor that balanced well with the crispness and saltiness of the bacon, the firmness of the day-old bread soaked in cream, the flavors and aromas emanating from the fresh thyme and chives and the sweetness of the baked pumpkin.
|Remove pumpkin top after 90 minutes and bake for another 20 (my top had popped off)|
Piping hot out of the oven, my pumpkin’s burnt orange color was slightly caramelized at the top and contrasted nicely with the stuffing that overflowed down the sides. This dish was a feast for the eyes and nose and its image deserved to be captured by a professional photographer for the cover of a foodie magazine.
|Voila! One stunning dish for your holiday table...|
This is a must try for the holiday season, or your next dinner party. This recipe can be found on page 364 of Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table.
|Pumpkin slices easily for individual servings|
To read other Dorista's French Friday Experiences: