Pumpkin – LA

Posted on November 7, 2011


Trick or Treat!

I’ve noticed something about LA.  No, it’s not the insane driving.

It’s not the fact that city blocks are about a half mile long.

And, it’s not vast amount of Spanish/adobe architecture next to ugly 70’s stucco bunker condos.

It’s that people here really like to decorate for Halloween.  In a big way.

I’m impressed.  It’s not just the usual hey-I’ll-put-a-pumpkin-on-my-stoop-because-it-was-on-sale-at-Ralph’s-and-hope-it-doesn’t-get-smashed-by-gutter-punks.

No, it’s full on cobwebs, mechanical witches, bats in the trees, and corn mazes in the backyard.

Okay, maybe I’m just not used to having a residential sprawl in the middle of a major metropolis.

It may not feel like fall outside, but there is a certain festiveness in the air that makes me want everything pumpkin.

This pumpkin pie pudding is so easy to make, and it’s so frickin’ scrumptious.

It’s like a pumpkin pie fell out of its crust and into my cup.  Then some whipped cream and candied pecans jumped in.

It’s super light and delish, and I don’t feel a darn bit guilty about eating it because there’s no butter and no heavy cream.  Afterall, we all have our ways of celebrating Halloween.  You can hang up ghosts on your porch.  I’ll have my pumpkin pie pudding.

Pumpkin Pie Pudding

Adapted from Cooking Light. Serves 4.

  • 6 tablespoons of white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 3/4 cups 1% low-fat milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 of a can of unsweetened pumpkin
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/4 cup of pecans
  • 2 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • Dash of salt
  • Optional: whipped cream for garnish

1. In a medium-sized saucepan, whisk together white sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.

2. Over medium-low heat, add milk and the egg, whisking all ingredients together so that everything is incorporated and smooth. No eggy or cornstarch lumps.

3. Once the mixture starts to thicken slightly (after about 5 minutes), add the pumpkin and vanilla.  Continue whisking and scraping the bottom.

4. Cook for about about 10-15 minutes until the mixture is very thick (pudding like!) and the whisk leaves marks in the pudding.

5. Pour into serving dishes and allow to cool on the counter.  Cover with plastic wrap and allow to cool in the fridge for 3 hours.

6. In the meantime, spray a piece of foil with nonstick spray (so that the nuts won’t stick as they cool).  In a non-stick pan, add the nuts and brown sugar.  Stir and toast over medium-low heat until the sugar is dissolved and coats the nuts evenly (about 5-7 minutes).  Place the nuts on the foil to cool.

7. Immediately before serving, top the pudding with the nuts and whipped cream, if desired.