Thanksgiving food is wonderful anytime of year.
We recently served pumpkin custard as a side dish for a dinner with friends. Because I had turkey thighs in my freezer I had decided on a “Thanksgiving in the spring” menu of roasted sage and garlic-rubbed turkey thighs, cranberry sauce, roasted green beans, whipped cauliflower and the pumpkin custard. The custard was filling and date-sweetened and added a festive touch to our gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined sugar-free meal.
The custard can be made a day ahead and served at room temperature, but it’s also good warm or cold.
Enjoy as a side dish, dessert, or snack. To help break the dessert habit, I like the idea of this custard with a meal. As a dessert it may not be sweet enough for some people’s taste, so you might want to try it first before serving to company. I first made it to eat on its own when I had a bad cold, and it was wonderful comfort food.
|Creamy Pumpkin Custard||
- 1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree, OR 2 cups cooked pumpkin (canned or cooked squash or sweet potato may also be used)
- 1 cup coconut milk (if using canned, shake before opening, stir after opening, and refrigerate or freeze the rest for another use)
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped (see Note) OR 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 6 pitted dates
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Prepare the baking dish: Place a tea towel or lightweight dish towel, folded to lie flat, in the bottom of a 9- by 13-inch baking dish. Place 6 ramekins or heat-safe baking cups on the towel in the baking dish.
- Place all ingredients in blender and blend at high speed until well-combined and the dates are completely incorporated. Stop the blender and scrape the sides once or twice if necessary. Pour mixture into the ramekins and place the pan in the oven. Pour hot water into the pan to a half inch to inch from the tops of the ramekins.
- Bake 40 to 60 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center of one of the custards comes out mostly clean. (Custards will continue to bake for a few minutes after you take them out of the oven.) Serve warm, room temperature or cold. Store custards in refrigerator covered loosely with waxed paper or plastic wrap. Best within 2 to 3 days.
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