The Taste of Pumpkin Pie Without the Pesky Crust

This simple pudding takes a Middle Eastern approach to a fall staple

Pumpkin Spoon Halva with Cardamom Syrup
Pumpkin Spoon Halva with Cardamom Syrup
Just three ingredients—pumpkin, coconut milk, and salt—combine to make a simple spoon pudding, sweetened with cardamom-scented golden syrup and topped with crunchy pumpkin seeds.Farideh Sadeghin

There’s only so much pie-making (and eating) one can take this time of year—especially pumpkin pie. But to dismiss one of the quintessential fall desserts is ludicrous, as there's no reason to discriminate against the savory-sweet vegetable. Instead, take your pumpkin out of your pie dish and put it in a dessert that gives you similar flavors without all the effort: pumpkin pudding. It's a silky-smooth dessert that looks to spoon halva, a cousin of Middle Eastern halva candy, and it only requires the seasonal gourd and a little liquid (I prefer coconut milk, but whole milk or cream could also be used).

To make this version simple weeknight dessert, purée and cook down fresh pumpkin until it's pudding-like. After it’s cooked down, toast up the pumpkin’s seeds to scatter over the halva to give it a crunch. And then, finish it with a drizzle of golden syrup that's perfumed with cardamom seeds to hit all those buttery, sweet-and-spicy notes you want from any pumpkin dessert. The best part? It’s ready in less time than it takes to make the crust for that pie you’ve now moved on from.