Every fall I like to go off the beaten path and try a few pumpkin products from the Asian Food Market and H-Mart. Unlike all of the seasonal products we have here in the states, these are available year round and a lot of them use actual pumpkin and not the pumpkin pie spices. (Which seems to be a purely American obsession.)
Last year's Korean Pumpkin Porridge did not fair so well, but I have high hopes for this Pumpkin Custard from Thailand!
This pumpkin custard has some pretty basic packaging, it's just a printed cardboard sleeve with a frozen microwave-safe tray inside. It's very no-frills looking, and (frankly) unappealing when compared to tons of other products I've reviewed. It may not be pretty, but it does function well and the instructions are very easy to follow.
One of the real reasons why I picked this up, other than this being pumpkin flavored and it being October, is that I was impressed by the super short ingredients list.
Look at that! Just 5 real ingredients with no preservatives or chemicals that I can't pronounce! It's really refreshing to see something like this, and the combination of ingredients sounds appealing. It sounds like this is going to be some kind of fluffy coconut and pumpkin flavored egg-custard. It's not in a pretty package, but I'm hoping this is one of those "Don't judge a book by it's cover" kind of reviews.
I followed the directions and popped the custard in the microwave on high for about 2 and a half minutes. The results...
Not visually appealing at all, but it smells great! The custard smells egg-y, sweet, and a bit coconut-y. I can't really smell any pumpkin, but the coconut aroma is fairly strong and could be masking it.
Visually, the custard is a grey-ish beige color with clear liquid floating around on the surface and bright strips of orange pumpkin scattered on top. There's no sugar coating it, this thing is ugly, and it's one of the ugliest foods I've photographed in 2015, if not THE ugliest, but...it tastes pretty good!
The texture isn't something a lot of people would enjoy, it's kind of a toss up between scrambled eggs and steamed custard, but the flavoring is sweet, a little squash-y, definitely coconut-y, and best of all it's warm! It doesn't taste very strongly of pumpkin, even when you eat a lot of the orange pieces, but it has this earthy sweetness to it that's reminiscent of sweet potatoes and sweetened squash, so it is present. For the most part, this tastes like a coconut and egg custard, which isn't bad, but it's not very pumpkin-y.
So would I buy this again? Sure! The only negative thing I have to say about it (other than it being visually unappealing) is that it contains a surprisingly high amount of calories. This tiny tray is meant to be three servings! That's insane! It's so small! How in the world is this three servings? If you eat the whole tray, this tiny custard weighs in at 420 calories! That isn't terribly high when compared to other foods, but when you see how small this thing is, it's kind of crazy.
My final verdict is that this is a nice treat, and it was pretty cheap at the store, but it's a bit high in calories, so this isn't something you should eat every day, but I think it's definitely worth trying this fall/winter. Especially with all this rain and cold weather we've been having here in Jersey.
NOTE: Also, oddly enough, when my dog smelled this stuff he would NOT leave me alone. He was crazy obsessed with it to the point where I thought it was worth mentioning.
On a Pumpkin Scale of 1-5 (5 being the most pumpkin-y) I’d give this a 3. The only reason I rated it low was because it doesn't really taste like pumpkin, it's more coconut-y than anything else, but it was sweet, satisfying, and it warmed me up during this gross rainy night. I'd recommend that you should try it, but the soft steamed texture might not be for everyone.