pumpkin casserole with crunchy pecan topping :: by radish*rose

pumpkin casserole with crunchy pecan topping

I love savory pumpkin dishes. Also, anything involving Ritz crackers is likely to be delicious. Perhaps not slenderizing, but delicious, especially when also featuring a savory blend of pumpkin, red pepper, onion, and garlic, with some smoked paprika and chipotle for pizzazz, topped with crunchy pecans and panko, and baked until slightly puffed and golden brown. The original recipe from The New York Times uses yellow summer squash, which one steams and purees for inclusion in the dish, but I didn’t have enough squash so I substituted a can of pumpkin for half the squash puree; you can make the whole casserole with all pumpkin instead of squash. Plus, it’s less work that way since you needn’t steam and puree the squash. Win! You can bake this in a casserole (2 1/2 quarts), or small ramekins or cocottes for a cute presentation (just bake it for less time). We had this as a main dish, but it would also be great as a side for a holiday meal such as Thanksgiving. Yay!

pumpkin casserole with crunchy pecan topping
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Equipment: 2½ qt. baking dish, or four 8-ounce ramekins or cocottes plus a smaller casserole.
Ingredients
  • 2 15-ounce cans plain pumpkin puree
  • 7 T. butter (divided: 6 T. to saute veggies, 1 T. for topping)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1½ c. panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) or 4 slices plain white bread, toasted and crumbed in food processor
  • ½ c. chopped pecans
  • 24 Ritz crackers, crumbed in food processor
  • ½ lb. grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • ½ c. heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. smoked paprika (optional, but so good!)
  • ¼ - ½ tsp. ground cayenne or chipotle pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 2½ quart baking dish, or four 8-oz. ramekins and a smaller baking dish.
  2. Melt 6 T. butter over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and red pepper, and cook until just tender. Meanwhile, melt the remaining 1 T. butter and toss it with the panko and pecans.
  3. Mix the pumpkin puree, onions, pepper, garlic, cracker crumbs, and cheese. Stir in the eggs, cream, sugar, and seasonings. Blend well. Pour into baking dish (and/or cocottes). Top with the panko-pecan mixture. Bake until browned, about 40 minutes (check the cocottes after 30 minutes as they will be done faster). Enjoy!
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This is a radish*rose recipe adapted from the source(s) named above.  All images & content are copyright protected. All rights reserved. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish a recipe, please credit radish*rose and link back to the recipe. 

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