I was craving apple and pumpkin butters the other day, and couldn't find an Instructable made specifically for this! Pumpkin butter is basically concentrated pumpkin flesh; by slow cooking the pumpkin with some sugar, the flavors begin to caramelize, giving it a great taste and it's brown color. It also has a much longer shelf life than a pumpkin by itself does, and to me is just as versatile. It tastes great on breads, in sauces (I made a tiramisu with it!) and is pretty enough to make a great gift.
Because pumpkin is a low-acid food, simply canning pumpkin puree can cause botulism, and we don't want that. By adding the sugar and lemon, I have increased the pH of the pumpkin to a higher acid food; the pH levels should be high enough that the risk is very low. That being said I cannot recommend you save this treat long-term! It's so tasty it doesn't last long anyway. :)
There is NO DAIRY in this butter; the name "butter" in the title merely refers to the consistency. :) Smooth and buttery. I personally crave anything with spices in it during the fall/winter months, and I really wanted something to slather on biscuits the other morning. NOMS!
So here it is. Easy pumpkin butter! It makes a really great present, and if you learn to do canning (it's really easy too) it can last for quite some time and looks pretty when packaged up nice.
As a note: using pumpkins MADE for eating yields a MUCH tastier butter than using pumpkins made for carving. Jack-o-lantern pumpkins CAN be eaten, but they are bred to be cut up and not eaten, so the flesh isn't really very tasty. I used a Queensland Blue for this recipe.
You will need:
• a pumpkin; I made two pints out of a medium sized pumpkin. (Or use canned pumpkin).
• A small lemon
• Table sugar (regular granulated or turbinado)
• Brown Sugar
• Pumpkin Pie spice (blend of cinnamon, ground ginger, lemon peel, nutmeg, cloves, and cardamom).
• Crock pot (or pot with lid)
• Surface to cut on
• Jars with sealable lids
(EDIT: I'll try to get a better thumbnail preview image, I dislike this stock image one.)
If you don't want to have to cut up and roast your own pumpkin, you can use canned pumpkin puree. Make sure you aren't using "Pumpkin Pie" in a can; that already has spices added! If you're using canned pumpkin, go ahead and skip to step 3!