Abenaki Pumpkin Candy
 Recipe By     : TriTownDeb@aol.com
 Serving Size  : 1    Preparation Time :0:00
 Categories    : ** Posted To Recipelu            Candies
   Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
 --------  ------------  --------------------------------
    2      Lb            pumpkin -- (2 to 3)
    1 1/2  Tsp           baking soda
    2 1/2  Cups          sugar
      1/2  Cup           water
                         Juice and zest of 1 lemon (optional)
    3      Sprigs        fresh cilantro (optional) -- (3 to 4)
 Peel and seed pumpkin and cut it into 2X4 inch strips. Stir baking soda into en
 ough water to cover the strips. Add pumpkin strips and allow to soak 12 hours. 
 Drain and rinse pumpkin in running water. Drop pumpkin strips into a pot of boi
 ling water and cook until tender, but not
 soft. Remove the pumpkin strips and crisp in a bowl of ice cold water, then dra
 in. Combine sugar with 1/2 cup water, lemon juice and cilantro in a saucepan. H
 eat, stirring, until sugar is dissolved, then boil slowly, without stirring for
  10 min. Add pumpkin strips, cover the pot, and simmer for about 20 min, until 
 syrup is thick and strips are brittle. Spread candy out on a rack or on a wax p
 aper-covered tray to dry for at least 10 hours. Roll in additional sugar if des
 ired and store in an airtight container.
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 NOTES : Makes about 1 pound.
 Coiled strips of pumpkin and melon drying in the sun were a common sight in
 the late fall at the turn of the century. Simmered, often together with dried
 apples or berries, and if available, added sugar, they made a popular dessert.
 Pumpkin candy is another treat. Traditionally, the strips of pumpkin in this
 recipe are soaked in a bath of water and wood ashes to soften, however today,
 most indians use baking soda as a substitute for the ashes.
 Those who prefer a less sweet candy sometimes add lemon juice and thin strips
 of lemon zest to the sugar syrup and flavor their syrup with cilantro.
 Those with a real sweet tooth, roll the dried candy in coarse grained sugar.