Does the title of this post have you wondering if I fell and hit my head?! No, I did not fall or hit my head. I was in Walmart a couple of weeks ago and they had a one day special on the “Sugar Pie” pumpkins that you use for pies at .78 cents EACH ! I just could not pass that up, so they have been decorating my counter top until I was ready to dehydrate them. The pumpkins are now selling at .78 cents a pound, not a bad deal even now.
I also love roasted pumpkin seeds. Just the smell of the pumpkins and pumpkins seeds roasting in the oven makes it feel more like fall, and brings back all the memories when my kids were small and we were carving pumpkins. I don’t use the jack-o-latern pumpkins as they don’t make good pies and we live way out in the woods so there are no trick-or-treaters to decorate for.
To find out how many pumpkins I could get in a jar I went with this process:
I started with 5 pumpkins that ranged in weight of 2.10 lbs to 2.13 lbs each for a total of 13.54 pounds. I washed the pumpkins, cut the stem end out so I could cut the pumpkins in half and scrape out all those wonderful seeds.
Next, I preheated oven to 325 degrees farenheit and placed the cleaned halved pumpkins cut side down on cookie sheets and placed the pumpkins in the oven to bake until they started to turn a dark burnt orange color, sort of like an older basketball and the pumpkins will be very soft to the touch which was around 45 minutes. I let the pumpkins cool enough to handle and then scooped out all that glorious baked goodness into a large bowl. I wound up with 9 cups of cooked pumpkin pulp.
I placed one packed cup of pumpkin onto a dehydrator sheet and spread out into a thin and even layer and placed in my dehydrator for a total of 9 trays. I dehydrated the pulp at 135 degrees based on my dehydrator for fruits and vegetables for 18 hours until the pumpkin became crispy dry sheets of pumpkin.
Once the sheets of dried pumpkin had cooled completely I placed them into a large plastic bag so I could crush the pumpkin down into smaller pieces and not lose any of the dried pumpkin. I was able to fill 1 quart jar full with all of the dehydrated pumpkin. The dehydrated pumpkins weighed in at a total of 5.50 ounces! Isn’t that amazing.
After I got all of the pumpkins baking in the oven, I cleaned the pumpkins seeds and soaked them in salt water for about 15 minutes and roasted them in the oven at 350 degrees farenheit until dried and roasted which was about 30 minutes. You just have to keep an eye on them and stir the seeds occasionally to get them roasted evenly and keep them from burning. After they cooled down I poured them into a quart jar as well.
Verdict: So I was able to fill a quart jar with roasted pumpkin seeds and another quart jar with my five pumpkins. Now, you ask how do you use the dehydrated pumpkin? I have a coffee grinder that I use for my spices and I grind the pumpkin up into powder form as I need it for my recipes that call for pumpkin. Mix 1/4 cup pumpkin powder to 1 cup boiling water and let set for 20 minutes to rehydrate your pumpkin. This will make 1 cup of pumpkin pulp. How long does the dehydrated pumpkin last ? I have some that I dehydrated last year which is still perfect as it has been stored in a dark cabinet. My next post will be making a pumpkin pie from the dehydrated pumpkin and we will see how it turns out! Until next time sending you all a yellowrock.