My husband stopped for a medical appointment after work one day recently. The woman at the front desk seemed overwhelmed with her work and, in my husband's opinion, in need of a little cheering up.
Noticing the little pumpkin on her desk, he said, "I wonder how it would work to scoop out the guts of a sugar pumpkin like the one there and fill it with chopped apples and raisins, maybe some sugar and cinnamon. If you baked it, I'll bet it would be really good." She looked up with a smile on her face. "I'll try that! I think my husband and I would really like it!"
We decided to try it ourselves. It was delicious. We'll do it again this Fall, probably more than once.
(Sugar pumpkins are sometimes called "pie pumpkins" and are very small, usually six to eight inches around.)
Spiced Apples and Raisins in a Pumpkin Pot
1 sugar pumpkin
4-5 baking apples, peeled and chopped
1/2 c raisins
1/4 c chopped walnuts
1/3 c brown sugar
spices to taste -- suggest cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves
2 T butter
Preheat oven to 375°.
Cut the top off the pumpkin and scoop out the guts, as if you were preparing a Jack-o-lantern. Mix together the apples, raisins, and walnuts with the sugar and spices. Stuff the pumpkin with the apple mixture. (Any stuffing that doesn't fit into the pumpkin can be saved for making applesauce or filling for apple pie, fritters, or other apple dessert.) Replace the pumpkin top.
Place in a baking dish and bake for 60 to 90 minutes, until the inside of the pumpkin is fork tender. Scoop the contents into a bowl, including the pumpkin flesh. Fold the pumpkin into the apple mixture. Dot with butter. After it's melted, fold the mixture together one more time. Serves 4.