So I had an unopened pint of whipping cream left over from the holidays, sitting there in the refrigerator, looking at me accusingly, "What? You're just going to let me sit here and go sour?"
I had to take action.
Then I remembered that I had a can of organic pumpkin puree in the pantry. So the idea of a pumpkin mousse sprang to mind.
Oddly, an Internet search did not turn up any simple pumpkin mousse recipes. There were a lot of elaborate concoctions, such as "Pumpkin Mousse Trifle", where the pumpkin mousse mixture included marshmallow creme, and it was layered with ginger cookies and custard -- well it may be good but it just looked like a little more trouble than what I wanted to do.
Well at least it looked like you really can fold together canned pumpkin puree and whipped cream to get a mousse. So I made up a recipe on the spot, and it turned out really, really good. Here it is:
1 15-oz can pumpkin puree
1/4 c brown sugar
1/2 c white sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla
1-1/2 c heavy cream
Mix all ingredients except for the whipping cream. I used an egg beater to get it all nice and smooth.
In a separate bowl, whip the cream until stiff (don't overwhip or it will start to become butter).
Fold the whipped cream into the pumpkin mixture.
Spoon the mixture evenly into 8 bowls or ramekins. It will be about 1/2 - 3/4 cup in each bowl (varies depending on how much volume there is in the whipped cream).
Cover the bowls and chill in the refrigerator for 1 to 4 hours before serving.
Mmm, good! The spices really bring out the pumpkin flavor, and there is enough sugar but it is definitely not over-sweetened.