PUMPKIN POCKETS

Pumpkin Pockets

BY JENNIFER CARDEN

Bring your child along to the market or pumpkin patch to pick out just the “right” specimen for this dish! These can be made for the Thanksgiving meal, or a few days later when you are sick of leftovers, but still crave the flavors of fall.

An easy way to make homemade ravioli, Gyoza wrappers can be baked, fried, or boiled like pasta. In this case, the wrappers cook up just like ravioli, with a creamy filling inside. Serve topped with browned butter and a dusting of cinnamon, or butter and grated Parmesan cheese, or just plain as a great finger food.

Makes 60 ravioli

FILLING:

8 ounces cream cheese
One 3 to 4 pound pumpkin (See note)
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus 1 tablespoon for pasta water
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus extra for optional garnish
1 package (60) round gyoza wrappers (See note)
2 tablespoons butter, for garnish
Grated Parmesan cheese, for optional garnish

Wash and split the pumpkin in half and remove the seeds and fibers, scraping with a metal spoon. Discard fibers and save seeds for toasting later. Oil a sheet pan and place 2 halves cut-side-down on pan. Bake in preheated oven until pumpkin flesh is tender when pierced with a knife – about 60 minutes.

Remove the pumpkin halves from the oven and when cool enough to handle, scoop the baked flesh out of each pumpkin half with a spoon. Puree pumpkin in a food processor fitted with a metal chopping blade or mash by hand.

Place cream cheese in a microwave-safe bowl and heat on high for 30 seconds to soften. Add the pumpkin and stir to combine. Add 1 teaspoon of the salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon and mix with a stick blender or by hand until the filling is smooth.

Place a 1/2 teaspoon-sized ball of filling in the center of each wrapper. Wet the edges with water and fold the ravioli over to form half moons. Pinch to close, pressing down lightly around the mounds of filling to prevent air bubbles.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add 1 tablespoon of salt. Gently add the ravioli and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they float. Depending on the size of the pot, you may have to cook them in batches. Drain the pasta and top with your choice of browned butter and cinnamon or butter and grated Parmesan.

RECIPE NOTES:

  • If you are making these out of season, you may substitute a 15-ounce can of pumpkin puree for the freshly roasted pumpkin.
  • Freeze any extra Pumpkin Pockets for those nights when the kids are hungry and you are too tired to cook. To serve, boil the frozen pockets in the same manner as fresh, but extend the cooking time to 6 minutes.
  • Wonton wrappers are square and gyoza wrappers are round and slightly thicker, but they are essentially made of the same ingredients. You can use either for this recipe. The flavor and cooking time will be longer for thicker gyoza.
  • Filling saves well in the freezer, wrap tightly and thaw before using.


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