Pumpkin puree and apple sauce are mandatory dishes of the season. Making both of them is easier and healthier than buying them. If you have babies, they will appreciate your efforts for sure. Your wallet will appreciate your efforts, too: making these dishes by yourself saves A LOT of money. Here’s how I do it.
Homemade Pumpkin Puree
3- to 4-pound pumpkin
1 cup water
Preheat the oven to 350º F. Cut your pumpkin in half (or ask a man to be useful and do it.) Clean the seeds and the guts out. To make a zinc-rich snack, you can wash the seeds and gently roast them on a dry frying pan, turning them sporadically, until they begin to lightly brown.
Place pumpkin halves face down into a large dish. Add water to the bottom of the dish. Bake for 1-1 1/4 hours or until pumpkin flesh is soft and easy to scoop.
Scoop the pumpkin flesh out, leaving the outer shell behind. Put the soft flesh into a blender or food processor. Blend, pulsing until the purée is smooth. Strain through a cheese cloth or nut bag to remove excess moisture. Store in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to three days or in the freezer for up to three months.
Homemade Sugar-Free Applesauce
8 apples – peeled, cored and chopped
1 1/2 cups water
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
In a saucepan, combine apples, water and cinnamon. Cover, and cook over medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes, or until apples are soft. Allow to cool, then mash with a potato masher.
Store in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to three days or in the freezer for up to three months.