A Different Pumpkin or…
Taking the Bull by the Horns

Cooking in Venezuela today, is not easy, believe me ….. But a challenge to serve a dish that is at least tasty and nutritious that might be very cheap in other countries but here, it is very expensive here, Can you believe that 250 grams of cheese costs 400 BsF (400.000 Bs they took out three ceros so people could handle those amounts…)
Well, when I was cooking yesterday, I thought fried chicken, yellow rice and plantain were not enough and I decided to add pumpkin…boiled pumpkin maybe with butter and white cheese, traditional but ugh! So I took what I had at home and made this and to be honest it is so good and easy to make that I will not go for traditional pumpkin style again …nope
You may not know that I am celiac (although I still cook with gluten for others :’( ), and I had to make a b├ęchamel or white sauce for this dish so I could not go for the one part butter, one part flour ratio (for a cup of milk one tablespoon butter and one tablespoon wheat flour) so what I did was using corn starch instead of wheat flour and used a very different technique, not the traditional roux, I like this method better because it is less work and the texture of the sauce is very smooth and silky. Corn starch is not as strong as wheat flour so I had to change the proportion according to my needs; I wanted a lighter sauce because I was adding cheese …


1 cup milk plus three tablespoons, room temperature
3 Tablespoons corn starch
1 tablespoon butter
200 grams of muenster cheese, cut in very small cubes
A pinch o grated nutmeg
A pinch of smoked paprika
A pinch of grated black pepper
Boiled pumpkin (not too soft)
1-      Heat the cup of milk plus butter.
2-      In a small bowl add  the rest of the milk and the corn starch stir well and add  to the milk butter mixture stir constantly until it thickens
3-      Then add the cheese and keep stirring until t is melted
4-      Add the pinch o nutmeg or to taste stir well
5-      Place the pumpkin in a tray and add the cheese sauce on top the sprinkle the paprika and pepper on top and bake with broiler function

Note:  I could have added grated parmesan cheese on top but Can you believe no one is selling it  in my town?, I added chopped cheese on top … didn’t like how it looks hehehehe