I've mentioned before what a lazy composter I am, right? Well, being less than diligent in this endeavor does have its perks. As in, surprise veggies. We had a couple of good squash vines snaking out through the bottom of the enclosure this year. Along with beans, pumpkins are the most common thing I get from my compost. Sure, I may only end up with a few, but they're just a bonus anyway! So, with two of my small pumpkins, I decided I wanted to make a seasonal jam.
I'm not sure which variety this was (yes, one drawback), but holy canoli was it hard to peel. I almost screamed about a jillion times. So. Frustrating. But there was no way I was stopping after all the work I did, so I barreled through two small pumpkins and was rewarded with a batch of bejeweled jam. It was a lovely, squashy sweetness that tastes fantastic slathered on brioche or croissants, and would make some fun thumbprint cookies. Next time (when I find a thinner-skinned pumpkin), I will try adding some vanilla bean seeds or perhaps some spices to the mix. Until then, I say all the sweat and stabbed fingers were worth it.
Marmellata di Zucca
adapted from recipe source: Twelve by Tessa Kiros
yield: ~2 cups
1 lb. 2 oz. (500 g) cleaned, skinned pumpkin
juice & grated zest of 1 lemon
12.5 oz. (350 g) superfine sugar
Cut pumpkin into small chunks. Place in a saucepan with lemon juice and sugar. Cook for about 45 minutes over a low flame, stirring every once in a while to prevent sticking.
Puree mixture with an immersion blender. Add lemon zest and simmer for another 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until you have a thick jam.
Keep in the fridge or process for canning, if you wish, and this jam will keep for up to one year.