Truth be told, life is not going as planned.
Do you know what my plan was?
I figured by number 4 they’d just be walking out. So 5 shouldn’t be that bad.
Know how many kids I have?
Not counting goats or dogs, I have none.
Not a 1.
I was going to have them all by the time I was 30. Then I would have my 30s to get back into shape, be an awesome Mom, and be ready to take on the world by the time I was 40.
I’m not telling you how old I am right now. But let’s just say there is no way I am going to be able to pop out 5 kids by the time I’m 30. Because 30 isn’t so far away anymore.
unless I became Octa-Mom or something.
What a thing to be known for.
But I digress.
I was also going to write a book. It was going to be called “My Life as a Stay At Home Mom”. It was going to be comical and heartfelt, and all about life with 5 kids. It was going to be perfect, and we were going to sleep in big fluffy beds at night with white sheets and big fat pillows.
My bed is usually full of some sort of organic matter. Dirt. Hay. Straw. Once there was even chicken poop in there. Like what in the what? (I wish I had a wonderfully clear explanation, but I just really don’t. Who cleans up around here?).
I also have a flat pillow because fluffy ones make my neck hurt.
Nothing in this house has been white since 1999 when I wasn’t a farmer, but had learned to eat a popsicle without spilling it down my shirt.
Ahh, those were the days.
So here I am telling you that my life did not go as planned. As I’m sure plenty of you can say.
Truth be told I don’t know who I would have become had that life plan actually come to pass. I really don’t think I would have ended up here on the farm.
Probably the only thing I would have in common with that fictional April would be the love of food. Because let’s be real, I’m still April.
The cooler weather has pushed me back inside the kitchen once again. For the longest time I had been avoiding it, preferring to spend my days outside in the fields with Hayley and the goats.
But today I found myself inside roasting pumpkins, making bone broth, and planning a dinner of chicken vegetable soup. And we all know I love soup.
Probably the only thing I like more than soup is dessert, and glory hallelujah we are in the season of pumpkin desserts.
I’m not prejudice. I love all manner of autumn themed desserts. While some people take up sides over the pumpkin spice and the apple cider, I for one, like to have my cake and eat it too. Apple cider with my pumpkin spice cake? I think yes!
But all pumpkin desserts require the same thing: pumpkin puree. Now I’m not against buying it in the can, but sometimes buying the pumpkins is way cheaper, or if you grew pumpkins in your garden this year, making your own puree is just smart.
So, here’s how to make pumpkin puree from a real pumpkin.
Step 1: Preheat your oven to 300°F.
Get your pumpkin(s). Any pumpkin can be used for this, however pie pumpkins also known as sugar pumpkins tend to make the nicest desserts.
Step 2: Prepare your pumpkin(s) for roasting. You can do this 1 of 2 ways. You can simply put the pumpkin in the oven whole and roast it that way. I usually wrap it in aluminum foil to help hold the juices in. This method will take longer in the oven but it requires less prep work.
Or you can cut the pumpkin in half, from stem to base (which would have happened to moi had I had 5 kids….ahem), while it’s still raw. Clean out all the seeds and strings, then place on a cookie sheet. I roast cut side down, with about a half inch of water in the bottom of the cookie sheet to stop the pumpkin from burning.
Step 3: Allow to roast until soft, approximately 1 hour.
Step 4: Remove from the oven and allow to cool until you’re able to handle the pumpkin.
See this is easy! You’re killin’ it.
Step 5: Clean out any remaining strings that you may have missed, or if you roasted the pumpkin whole, clean out the inner part of the pumpkin. Once seeds are removed, scrape all the pulp off the skins and place in a bowl or blender.
Step 6: Mash the pulp with either a potato masher or blend in a blender or food processor to make the pulp smooth.
Step 7: Congratualtions! You have pumpkin puree. You can store it in the fridge for up to a week, or freeze for 6 months. This will work in place of any recipe that calls for pumpkin puree.
And don’t forget to give your chickens the scrapes. The seeds act as a natural dewormer plus they just naturally love pumpkin. Wins all around.
So life hasn’t turned out the way I planned. But I do have a lot of pumpkin in the freezer for dessert, and at the end of the day I’m a happy girl. That’s all that matters. Chicken poop and all.