Pumpkin recipe – Fritters, everyone’s favorite!

Ask my sister for a pumpkin recipe and she will most probably roll her eyes in a 360º fashion. You see, pumpkin is not her thing. I don’t blame her, poor thing! I hail from an era where you were forced to eat whatever was put on your plate. Sometimes my mom would sit and wait until you finally gave in, scoffed down the food just so that you could go and play.
With my mom and my sister it was a battle of the wills, I swear neither of them would give in. If only she took my advice and ate her pumpkin with her other food, but no she kept it until last and ….cold. As far as I am concerned, cold pumpkin is only good for one thing…….
Pumpkin fritters. Golden brown, soft in the center and covered with cinnamon sugar, yum! My memory with pumpkin is a lot more pleasant than that of my sister. I remember going to my Gran’s house on Fridays and in winter, there was always the possibility that she had some pumpkin fritters. Her house would be filled with the smell of cinnamon and vanilla, because with her pumpkin fritters she always made this “vanilla sauce”. 

I only figured out later in my life that it was a creme anglaise that she made.  I want to create the same kind of memories for my children, hopefully not the cold pumpkin ones, but rather warm and fuzzy feeling memories. Yesterday it was a a wee bit cold here in Cape Town. There was this chilling breeze the whole day and I thought it was the right kind of  day for a memory…. a pumpkin fritter memory. We are enjoying the last oranges of the season so I tweaked my Gran’s creme anglaise somewhat….
Pumpkin Fritters with Orange Creme Anglaise
Creme Anglaise

 2 cups whole milk
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped
1 tsp orange zest
6 large egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp orange liqueur – optional

In  a medium pot, bring the milk, vanilla bean and vanilla seeds, and orange zest to a simmer over medium-high heat. Remove from the heat and discard the vanilla bean and zest.

In a  bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until thick and ribbons form, about 3 minutes. Gradually whisk in about 3/4 cup of the hot milk, and whisk until well incorporated. Add the egg mixture to the pot with the remaining milk and cook, stirring, until it forms a thick custard, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and strain into a clean bowl to cool. Add the orange liqueur if you wish.Cover with plastic wrap,  to prevent a skin from forming, and refrigerate until cool, about 2 hours, or overnight.

Pumpkin Fritters

500gr pumpkin – weigh after it has been peeled (even butternut will do)
120g flour
½ tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
vegetable oil for frying
cinnamon sugar for dusting

Cut the pumpkin into chunks and cook in water until very soft. Drain and  allow to cool. Place all the ingredients, including the pumpkin into a blender and  blend. Heat the oil in a saucepan and when the oil is hot, drop spoonfuls of the batter into the oil. When golden brown on both sides, take out of the oil and drain. Dust with cinnamon sugar and serve with the Orange Creme Anglaise.

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