Pumpkin Pie and The Great Pumpkin Imposter

Two years ago, when we moved into our current home, our neighbors planted banana squash. I had no idea what kind of squash it was, but it was growing right through the fence into my yard. I watched it all summer. It looked like a weird summer squash. Around July, I decided to pick a small one and see what it was. It definitely was NOT a summer squash, so I threw it out. Two more were still growing, so I decided to wait and see what happened. (I know there might be some issues about whose squash it was and whether or not I should have picked it…don’t judge me, I was pregnant and not in my right mind.)  Anyway, along about October, our neighbor knocked on our door holding a gigantic pinkish orangish squash (I had forgotten about the squash in the throes of having a baby in the house). He told me it was a banana squash. That was it; no “it tastes really good cooked like…” or anything. I decided to just play with it. I cut it open, baked it and pureed the orange pulp. It was oddly pumpkin-like, so I made pie using my pumpkin pie recipe. Everyone thought it was pumpkin. A light bulb went off in my brain, “Ha! I am going to fool everyone this year and save a ton of money!” I froze 8 containers of squash (enough for 16 pies) and made delicious pies. No one cared whether it came from a traditional round pumpkin or that freak of nature: the banana squash.

This year, when I went to plant my garden, I looked in vain for a banana squash start. I looked in vain for banana squash seeds. Even that retail king of seeds, Burpee, didn’t have banana squash. I began to wonder if I had to belong to a secret club to obtain the mysterious plant. I planted and harvested my garden with no banana squash, BUT! I found one at a roadside produce stand. In my frugally conniving mind, I decided then and there to harvest the seeds from the squash and plant them next year.
So, that leads me to today’s activities.
Here is the squash in question.
I weighed it to see how big it was: 15.35 pounds.
I cut it in half and scooped out all of the seeds. I decided that realistically, I would not ever plant more than 50 plants in my entire lifetime, so I threw out half of the seeds. Those I kept are now in a jar of water fermenting. I did a bit of Internet research on the best way to save seeds for gardening and that is the first step. I need to stir them every day for 4 days. The good seeds will sink to the bottom of the jar and the bad seeds, goop and yuck will stay on top. I will dry them on a paper towel (one of the very few uses I have for paper products) and then put the dried seeds in an envelope and freeze for 2 days. Then I will store them in a dry place until next year. It seems like a lot of work, but these are very elusive seeds.

I cut the squash up into uniformly sized pieces and poured about 1/4-1/2 inch of water in the pan. Then I covered the pans with foil. Right now, they are in my convection oven baking at 375 degrees for 2 hours or so. I will later peel them and put the pulp in my food processor and then divide into freezer bags. When they are cooled, I will freeze them. To use, I will defrost it in the fridge and then pretend I opened a 29 ounce can of Libby’s pumpkin. Here is our favorite recipe (and it is GOOD!)
Pumpkin Pie
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1½ cups sugar (or 1 cup honey or real maple syrup + ½ cup sugar)
  • 1 can evaporated milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 cups pumpkin
  • 3 Tbsp flour
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • 1½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • ½ tsp ginger
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl with a whisk or spoon.
  2. Pour into 2 prepared pie shells.
  3. Cover your pie edges if you don't want them dark (I have 3 Mrs. Anderson's pie shields and I love them).
  4. Bake 400 degrees 40 minutes.

3 thoughts on “Pumpkin Pie and The Great Pumpkin Imposter

  1. >Kristen, I’m happy to help you with the clickable linking! I’ll try and explain it here, but feel free to email me if you have ANY questions (I didn’t find your email addy). When you are blogging and reach the point where you want to make the words clickable, stop and highlight the word/s. Then look at the toolbar above where you are typing – you will see a “b”, an “i”, and then this green thing that has two little circle things at the top that look like eyes or horns (I’m sorry, but I have NO idea what it actually is!!!). If you hover your mouse over this, it will say “insert link.” When you click on it, a small box will appear where you can type in the URL to which the words will link. Once you’ve clicked OK, some html formatting will appear, and you’ve got a clickable link in your blog!! I was so excited when I figured that out! :) Let me know if you need any more help – email me at SuzyBoggussFan at gmail dot com. Have fun!!

  2. >Found you from the Grocery Cart Challenge. I LOVE banana squash. Just steamed or roasted with a little butter, salt and pepper. But, then again, maybe I’m weird. I fed it to my babies purred as one of their first foods. That’s saving a ton of money since those little jars are pricey. I love your trick. I’ll have to try it, although I don’t have a 15# squash.

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