Roasted Pumpkin Butter with Pecans

You decide how sweet or not you want to go with this healthy pumpkin butter, its rich and complex flavor develops from a second roasting in the oven with the addition of brown sugar, molasses, butter, pecans and spices... slowly caramelizing while a normally bland orange color evolves into a deep, rich rusty hue.
 
Roasted Pumpkin Butter with Pecans | Flavors of Light
Roasted Pumpkin Butter with Pecans | Flavors of Light
 
While I thought to use this pumpkin butter as a filling for a holiday recipe, it's delicious as is, straight out of the jar spread on some good country bread or morning toast, or even to flavor a bowl of yogurt.
 
But, for a festive breakfast or to fulfill late night cravings I highly recommend a generous swipe of this spice and pecan scented pumpkin butter to top a stack of deliciously light and tender sourdough pancakes... ( try the pancake recipe I've also included below, adapted from chef Nancy Silverton—they're the best!) with warmed maple syrup, a few toasted pecans, and good company of course! 
 
Roasted Pumpkin Butter with Pecans | Flavors of Light
Roasted Pumpkin Butter with Pecans
Recipe loosely adapted from The Preservation Kitchen, by Paul Virant, Ten Speed Press
 
Ingredients
4 cups (2 pounds) roasted pumpkin or mix of both pumpkin and squash
1/4 cup pecans (a generous 1/4 cup)
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup unsulphured molasses (or dark honey)
6T unsalted butter cut into small cubes
1/2 t salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 t ground cardamon
1/4 t ground ginger
generous pinch of ground cloves
 
Method

Preheat oven to 375°.  Cut pumpkin and squash if using both in half or quarters, depending on size and remove seeds. On a parchment lined baking sheet roast the pumpkin face down for 40 to 50 minutes until flesh is tender. During the last few minutes add pecans to the pan to toast.
 
Remove pan and cool pumpkin briefly, then scoop out the flesh into a bowl. Using a food processor or blender, place small batches of the pumpkin along with the toasted pecans, process just until smooth adding a little water if necessary (the butter will thicken up considerably in the oven later).
 
Adjust oven temperature lower to 350°. Add the salt, spices, brown sugar and molasses (I start with less sugar and butter, adjusting as needed as pumpkin butter roasts) mix until combined and spread the mixture out in a good sized baking dish. Dot with butter cubes and roast for about 1-1 1/2 hours, stirring every 15 minutes or so. The sugars and butter will encourage caramelizing and the pumpkin butter will darken and turn a rich rusty orange. Taste as you go along adjusting sweetness, salt and spice. Remove from oven, stir well and let cool before packing in jars, add a little spring water if needed to reach desired consistency. Pumpkin butter will keep for about 2 weeks in the fridge. Enjoy!
 
Tender Sourdough Pancakes
Makes about 12 pancakes 
 
Ingredients
255 grams active or mature 100% hydration sourdough starter ( I like to use active if I can )
1 T   sugar, maple syrup, or honey
1 T   melted unsalted butter
1  egg
1/4 t salt
1/4 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
 
Method
Whisk all ingredients together in a large bowl. You'll see the batter start to lighten up and appear almost foamy when stirring.  Pour by 1/3 cupful onto a hot, lightly buttered cast iron pan or griddle. When lots of bubbles appear on the surface (but before they all break)  flip the pancakes and cook additional minute or two.  Keep pancakes warm by placing on a parchment lined tray in a 300° oven until ready to serve.

Slather with pumpkin butter and maple syrup. Enjoy!

P.S. I think a jar of this "butter" would make a lovely holiday gift. Happy Holiday! x.
Roasted Pumpkin Butter with Pecans | Flavors of Light

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