In Season: Pumpkins begin to ripen in September. Because they store well, pumpkins are available all through the fall and winter. What to Look For: Make sure to choose a variety of pumpkin that's intended for cooking rather than for decoration. The ubiquitous field pumpkin -- the kind most commonly used to carve jack-o'-lanterns -- has watery, stringy flesh and is not recommended for eating. Sugar pumpkins and cheese pumpkins are two widely available varieties that are good for cooking and baking, thanks to their dense, sweet flesh. How to Store: Pumpkins keep well at room temperature for up to a month. Stored in a cool cellar or refrigerator, they can last up to three months. Once cut, pumpkin pieces should be wrapped tightly and refrigerated. Use cut pumpkin within five days.
Pumpkin desserts are synonymous with the fall season, most especially at Thanksgiving time. And pumpkin pie is just the beginning! In our collection of easy pumpkin desserts, you'll also find crowd-pleasing recipes for pumpkin cheesecake, cookies, bread pudding, and even a knockout pumpkin-almond tiramisu.