I’m not going to lie. I wasn’t too jazzed to make this recipe, which seems to be the theme (for me anyway) of October’s ffwD recipes. My main concerns with this recipe were that it’s yet another pumpkin recipe, which I don’t really care for, and that Dorie’s picture makes the pumpkin look like it’s the size of a watermelon. There was no way I was going to buy a pumpkin that big when it’s just me eating it this time around. However, my local grocery store came to the rescue and had a whole stand of cute mini-pumpkins. The smallest one I could find was around two pounds and just as cute as a button!
My only other concern was the baking time: 2 hours! Seeing as it’s already dark when I arrive home in the evening, I resorted to waking up early in the morning to prepare the pumpkin and stuffing, bake it, and have enough time to photograph it in the morning light before heading to work! Heated up stuffed pumpkin would have to suffice despite Dorie’s recommendation of serving it immediately from the oven.
I coaxed myself out of my hesitations by rationalizing that “at least the stuffing sounded delicious”, with my version comprising of cheddar and mozzarella cheeses, turkey bacon, bread cubes, dill and parsley. The nutmeg-speckled cream added to the decadence of the stuffing, and I was somewhat saddened by the fact that I didn’t have any chestnuts to throw in as well. However, Dorie was right on the money about having leftover stuffing, but no worries! I baked up the leftovers in its own dish for 20 minutes alongside the pumpkin.
At the one hour and a half baking mark, I was happy to see that there wasn’t much liquid that had oozed out of the pumpkin. Still, I baked it for an additional 20 minutes with its little cap off. When I finally cut into the pumpkin, I was a bit nervous that the pumpkin flesh had separated from the shell. But, there wasn’t anything I could do about that. I took just a little taste, and I must say that it tasted pretty fantastic! I’ll be enjoying my little stuffed mini-pumpkin for the next few days.
To see how other bloggers fared with their pumpkins stuffed with everything good, check out French Fridays with Dorie where we make recipes from Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table: More Than 300 Recipes from My Home to Yours.