Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Hunt for Puréed Pumpkin

I had forgotten this scene from last year:

It is early November, Thanksgiving is approaching, and Brian and I are getting in the mood for fall foods. Pumpkin pie being a favorite of Brian's, I decide to bake him one he only has to share with me.

I walk into the grocery store to buy the ingredients. One of them is pumpkin purée. Where DO they keep that stuff? Well, no worries - I'm sure they'll have piles of it in a holiday baking area. I find the seasonal display. Boxes of stuffing and cans of cranberry sauce form a festive mosaic. But no pumpkin. Well, at least there will be a stack of it in the baking aisle. I walk down the baking aisle. The aisle is free and clear of stacked cans.

OK. Worries are back. Now I have to figure out where it would be on the shelf.

I begin searching the edges of the canned vegetables and crawling on the floor to see the bottom shelves of the baking supplies.

Ah-hah! There they are! Ten little cans on a lowly shelf!

Does no one in Boston bake pumpkin pie?!?

Don't try to tell me they all use fresh pumpkins.


teal! said...

They do in Cambridge, at least - I remember one year going to Star Market the Wednesday before Thanksgiving to get pureed pumpkin. We found it on the shelf in the baking aisle, but for some reason didn't pick it up at that moment, but wandered around the store to get something else. By the time we came back for it (5 minutes later? 10 minutes later?) all of it was gone. The store was rather busy....

deanna said...

I think it's a conspiracy to have people buy frozen or bakery pies, because I recall a similar incident here. At least the cans tend to go on sale sometime near Thanksgiving, but they're still down on that bottom shelf...

Steph said...

In Boston?! I can't imagine they make it from scratch! :-)

Thank you for visiting my blog - and I look forward to visiting yours!

Are you a swing dancer? I see the Lindy Hop reference. My "DH" and I love to swing dance!

Teresa of Southern Touch Catering said...

Hi Melanie,
No pumpkin? Same was here a few weeks back & the store manager said it was due to a shortage!?!?!? But this week the shelves here are overflowing and I grabbed several cans just in case. I love pumpkin pie and can't wait to start baking them- I want to try pumpkin tea bread this year- anyone have a good recipe?

yellowinter said...

no way! fresh pumpkins? i certain used a puree for my pumpkin mochi! :) i saw a whole stack as high as my height at trader joe's the other day. hmmm... perhaps, i should go and get some too before they disappear again. :)

sufferingsummer said...

I have two pumpkins sitting here just waiting to be used but of course instead when I made pumpkin bread this week I just popped open a can...alas baking from scratch is a nice idea but not one I'm great at following through on all the time...I'm betting Bostonians are the same.

in answer to your question on my blog...I almost always make Colin a little lunch of leftovers. A slice of bread or a muffin, whatever has been baked recently and dinner from the night before. If there are no leftovers that he can heat up then I make a simple sandwich of either sausage and cheese with mustard or peanut butter and jelly. I also keep baby carrots or grapes or an apple on hand to throw in there. We try and just make a little more of our regular meals to send with him so that it doesn't make a dent in our budget. For awhile he was getting lunch at work everyday and spending upwards of $30/week and that was just getting out of hand. When our finances took a dive a month ago that was the first thing to go.
Good luck!~

Melanie said...

Wow! So many comments!

Teal - that's my point!! Why only ten cans?!?

Ran - You know, I'd never think to look for pumpkin at Trader Joe's, but you're right - I did see a stack of pumpkin there.

Summer - I'm all for cooking from scratch, but America's Test Kitchen says people cannot tell the difference between canned and fresh pumpkin. And at that point, I gave up fresh pumpkins. I guess I should check on additives, though.

Thanks for answering about the lunches too! The sausage and cheese sandwich idea is a good one. (He doesn't like leftovers, so I usually make those my lunch.) And he is usually willing to eat pb&j.