As the leaves turn bright colors and the nights grow chilly, odd orange orbs begin to pop up by the wagon full at roadside farm stands. Markets and groceries have crates of fairytale pumpkins sitting outside by the pretty mums, and big jack-o-lantern type pumpkins grace the bales of hay sitting next to the dried corn stalks that decorate the fence posts. It is time for apple cider, sweaters, soup, and fall baking.
Pumpkin and pie are the perfect pair.
Did you know that canned pumpkin is typically NOT actually real pumpkin? Most of the large companies that make canned pumpkin products use a special combination of three or four types of winter squash. While the taste and consistency can be counted on for almost all pumpkin recipes, I have always wanted to make my own pumpkin puree, but the thought of the time and mess always stopped me. The Instant Pot turns this into a simple task, that can be accomplished while you are busy doing other things around the house.
Make sure you buy a sugar pumpkin, and wash it before adding to the IP. Put one cup of water in the bottom of the put, place trivet inside, and the put the pumpkin on the trivet. If it does not fit, turn the pumpkin sideways or even upside down so that the stem is below the trivet. If it still does not fit, you can do this without the trivet and the pumpkin will be totally fine.
Lock the lid, set the toggle to sealing, and set the pot to manual for 14 minutes for an average sugar pumpkin. When the cooking is done, let the pot naturally release the pressure. Remove lid and allow the pumpkin to cool slightly before removing it to a platter or cookie sheet to finish cooling. Use two large spoons or tongs to help you manage the pumpkin. When pumpkin is cooled, pull off the stem, cut in half, and hollow out the seedy parts with a big spoon. Save the seeds if you would like to turn them into a healthy snack later!
The skin will easily come off the pumpkin, so peel it off gently with a knife, or, hold the pumpkin in your hand and then scoop the flesh into a bowl.
Using an immersion blender, thoroughly blend the pumpkin into a smooth consistency. You may need to add 1/2 cup water to thin it out a little.
Each pumpkin should get you approximately 2 cups of puree.