Cute comes to mind when you see baked miniature pumpkins filled with Fontina or Gruyère cheese and sage gracing a holiday dinner table in the fall. Kids love them (and so do adults!) because they are individual, personal-sized, side dishes. They're really festive when served on small plates and set at each guest's place setting, and will evoke a chorus of "awws" when people sit down to eat. This delicious recipe could not be more simple to make, and the recipe is easily multiplied.
Did you know that pumpkins are a fruit? It's true and Baby Boos - or miniature pumpkins - are a variety known as Pump Ke Mon or Lil Pump Ke Mon, that can have variable-colored skin and are about 5 inches in diameter and 3 inches high.
Keep in mind that miniature pumpkins or baby pumpkins also are perfect serving vessels for soups, grains, desserts and more.
- Slice off the top 1/2-inch of the pumpkin, scoop out the seeds and rub salt and freshly ground pepper into the cavity.
- Pour in 1 to 2 tablespoons heavy cream or milk or mascarpone cheese, add the fresh or dried sage leaf and grated fontina or Gruyère cheese, replace the lid, and bake in a pan until tender, 35 to 45 minutes.
- Take care not to overcook the squash or it might split and collapse in the oven. You can serve them on a platter or on individual bread-and-butter plates at each guest's place.