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The Perfect Halloween Dessert

Before I let this month go by without posting, I thought I just couldn't miss this recipe. It is perfect for the season: winter squash season and Halloween season. It is so easy to make and so beautiful and delicious once done.

This perfect dessert is made by filling a small pumpkin with coconut egg custard and steam for about an hour. This is the time of the year when you see pumpkins everywhere. Gather some before they are gone from the grocery stores. Farmers' market will have these yummy winter squashes until they are gone, about the end of winter. So, if you have farmers' markets near you, shop some of the winter squashes they have. This particular squash is called Kombucha. It is a meatier variety of squash and is perfect for this dessert. The variety is called Sunburst with bright orange color and shades of green. I ran into these at Austin Farmers' Market downtown and bought a few to cook with. You can use other kinds of smaller squashes or pumpkins for this recipe. Your choice is endless. As long as it has semi flat bottom that won't roll over when you put it in a steamer, it should be fine. Check out this website for different variety that you can try to grow from seeds in your garden. I think other kinds of custards like flan will work well as filling for this wonderful dessert as well. Hope this recipe comes in time for your Halloween party.

Egg Custard in Pumpkin

1 cup thick coconut cream (you can also use the top part of the can of coconut milk if you can't find coconut cream)

1 cup palm sugar

5 eggs

1 pandan leaf or pandan essence(you can buy frozen leaves at Thai Fresh or you can buy the essence at other Asian grocery store.)

1 medium size pumpkin (or k ombucha squash, autumn cup, buttercup, gold nugget, turban)

Heat the coconut cream, pandan leaf (if using, if using essence, add after it's cooled off) and palm sugar in a saucepan just enough to dissolve the sugar. Remove the leaf and let cool to room temperature.

Beat the eggs and mix in with the coconut cream mixture. Strain the mixture through a fine wire mesh colander to smooth out the bubbles. Spoon out any bubbles that may have formed over the top.

Pour the mixture into a hollowed out squash with an opening on top. Steam over medium-high heat until the custard is set, about an hour, depending on its size and thickness of the squash. Let cool and cut into slices like you would cut cakes. You can also pour the custard in a heat proof dish and serve custard over sweet sticky rice.

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