Pumpkin Pie Pudding

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Courtesy of Healthy Food for Living

Ingredients
* 4 large Medjool dates, pitted & roughly chopped, or enough to fill about 1/4 cup
* 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
* 1/4 tsp pure maple extract
* 1/2 cup mashed overripe banana, about 1 medium (for the sweetest pudding, wait until your banana has a completely brown – but not black – peel)
* 1/2 cup pumpkin puree (homemade is especially good in this recipe because you are not cooking it) See recipe below!
* 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
* 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice See recipe below!

Directions
1. Cover dates with boiling water in a small bowl and let soak for 10 minutes, or until very soft. Drain.
2. In a food processor, combine all ingredients and blend until very smooth.
3. Best if eaten immediately. (I put half of the pudding in the fridge overnight, and although still tasty, it tasted more banana-y than pumpkin-y and turned a dark, almost brownish color from the dates, spices, and oxidized bananas).

Pumpkin Puree
1. Start with “sugar” or “pie” pumpkins – they are smaller and sweeter than the big pumpkins used for carving into jack-o-lanterns.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degress F.
3. Coat a roasting pan or jelly roll sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
4. Cut pumpkin in half. Scoop out and discard seeds and pulp.
5. Place pumpkin halves – cut sides down – into the pan or onto the sheet.
6. Bake for about 60-90 minutes, or until pumpkin is tender and easily pierced with a fork.
7. Let roasted pumpkin rest at room temperature until cool enough to handle.
8. Flip pumpkin halves over and scoop flesh out of the skin and into the bowl of a food processor. Puree until smooth.
9. Line a sieve or colander with two layers of heavy-duty paper towel or cheesecloth and place over a bowl. Spoon puree into lined sieve and let drain for about 30 minutes.
10. Store in an air-tight container in the fridge.

Pumpkin Pie Spice
Combine the following:
* 1/4 cup ground cinnamon
* 1 Tbsp ground ginger
* 1 Tbsp ground nutmeg
* 1 tsp ground allspice
* 1 tsp ground cloves

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