Prep: 1. Preheat oven to 350. 2. Cut pumpkin in half and scrape out the seeds. Make: 1. Place pumpkin halves on a baking sheet. (We're divided over if they should be placed skin side up or down, see notes for details) 2. Bake pumpkin halves for 45-60 minutes, or until it feels soft all the way through when punctured with a fork. (exact timing depends on the size of the pumpkin). Let cool until they can be handled. 3. Using a spoon, scoop the pumpkin out from the shell. 4. Use a food processor, immersion blender, or potato masher to puree the pumpkin. 5. Either use immediately or place 1 cup portions into freezer bags or jars to use later.
Depending on the final use of your pumpkin, and personal taste, you can either roast the pumpkin halves cut side up or down. Roasting them cut side down will yield a softer, moister puree. Cut side up will yield slightly drier puree with a more caramelized, roasted flavor. This is a great way to take pumpkin pies, breads, and muffins to a whole new level. This works with any kind of winter squash, just adjust the time down for smaller varieties. We love to use the slightly sweeter kabocha squash and use the puree in place of pumpkin in pies and breads!