If February 15 is National Half-Off Chocolate in Red Heart-Shaped Boxes Day, November 1st is the $1 White Pumpkins from Safeway Day. (Usually, I haul myself to Half Moon Bay (sort of a tradition) for white pumpkins, but the van is acting odd.)
You need to use white pumpkins — and the right kind of white pumpkins — for baking. Some varieties of white pumpkins have greenish interiors and taste squash-like. Other types have reddish-orange flesh and smell faintly like cantaloupe. They’re sweeter than your typical jack-o-lantern pumpkins.
Right now there is the sweet smell of roasting pumpkin wafting through the house. Later, it will be scraped from the skin, divided in two-cup portions, and frozen. It will be sweet, rich pumpkin-date bread, to be served with cream cheese, or mixed with condensed milk to be baked into pies. I may even try my hand at soup this year.
I love fall.