Pumpkin-Sweet Potato Pudding (Cazuela de Calabaza)

Makes 12 servings

  • 1½ pounds calabaza or sugar pumpkin, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces (about 4 cups)
  • 1 ½ pounds boniato, (white sweet potato), sweet potatoes, or yams, peeled and cut into 2-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¾ cup canned unsweetened coconut milk
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon (or less to taste) ground cloves

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. With a paring knife, cut off the skin and stem, if any, from the calabaza and discard it along with any seeds. Cut the calabaza into 2-inch cubes. Boil the calabaza and sweet potato or yam until soft, about 20 to 25 minutes.
While the vegetables are cooking, line a 9 x 11-inch baking dish with the banana leaf, cutting it as necessary to fit. Grease the leaf evenly with 1 tablespoon of the butter.
Preheat the oven to 350° F.
Drain the vegetables thoroughly in a colander and transfer them to a large mixing bowl. Beat the calabaza and sweet potato with a hand mixer at medium speed until they are the consistency of lumpy mashed potatoes. Beat in the remaining ingredients, including the remaining tablespoon butter, one by one. Scrape the batter into the prepared dish and bake until a small knife inserted into the center of the cazuela comes out clean, about 1½ hours. Cool to room temperature.
Invert the cazuela onto a serving dish. (The easiest way to do this is to place the plate over the cazuela and, in one quick motion, flip the cazuela over.) Lift off the baking dish and peel off the banana leaf. Serve the cazuela at room temperature, chilled or re-warmed.

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