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Cinderella Pumpkin ‘Rouge Vif d’Etampes’

January 26th, 2009

The Cinderella Pumpkin ‘Rouge Vif d’Etampes’ is a beautiful French heirloom pumpkin. It first became available in the U.S. in 1883. It is a deep orange pumpkin with pronounced ribs and is quite flat. I can see why Cinderella used it as a coach to get to the ball, it truly is a lovely pumpkin!
I bought this one at our local farmer’s market this past fall. The lady that runs the farm said they make the best pumpkin pies, and since Mr Chiots and I love pumpkin pies I bought it.
This pumpkin was so beautiful I was reluctant to cut it up. It graced our dining room for the past several month. This past Saturday I decided it was time; the momentous occasion was Mr Chiot’s birthday. So out came the butcher knife and that was the end of our beautiful pumpkin.
Carving a whole pumpkin is a bit of a task. It’s definitely much easier to use a can opener to get your pumpkin purée, but this is much tastier and it’s local!
So into the oven it went. After it was baked and cooled I got out the old Squeezothat my mom lent me. This food mill has been used for years in our family. As kids we always thought making applesauce was fun, just because of the Squeezo.
I ended up with a huge bowl of pumpkin purée, much more than I would have been able to purchase canned for $3. I only needed 30 oz for my recipe, so I’ll freeze the rest for soup or muffins or perhaps another pie (the pets are also enjoying some of it mixed with butter).
I settled on a recipe from Use Real Butter because it called for freshly ground spices and cream. I happened to have some cream I skimmed from our local milk and pastured eggs from the local farm, so besides the spices it’s almost an all local pie. It has a lighter more custard like consistency than most pumpkin pies, and the freshly ground spices just put it over the top. It’s been a big hit here at Chiot’s Run. I’ve used freshly roasted pumpkins in pies before, and I must say, this is by far the best tasting pumpkin purée I’ve ever had.
I also love that her recipe is crustless. I’ve always made my pumpkin pies sans crust, there’s just sometime about that soggy crust I don’t like. I would much rather have a few crushed gingersnaps on top of my pumpkin pie that a soggy crust underneath.
I made sure I saved the seeds from this pumpkin so I could try to grow a few in my gardens. How great would these be gracing my front hillside! I am in the habit of saving seeds from things I buy as long as they are heirloom open pollinated plants. I even made up my own seed packets to put them.

Anyone else saving seeds from things they buy to grow in their gardens?

53 Comments to “Cinderella Pumpkin ‘Rouge Vif d’Etampes’”
  1. Mangochild on January 26, 2009 at 5:07 am

    Lovely pumpkin! I have never saved seed, but have been hearing so much about it that I might try with some pumpkin/winter squash. New venture for me. I’ve never seen Pink Banana squash, I’d love to try. (Gack, I’m already straying from my garden plan!)

    Reply to Mangochild's comment

  2. Colleen on January 26, 2009 at 5:24 am


    Rouge Vif d’Etampes was on my “wants” list this year, and I decided to hold off on it and grow more acorn squashes instead. Reading about how well your pie turned out has me thinking I should toss the acorn squashes and grow these instead. It is a gorgeous pumpkin.

    I’ll take you up on the seeds, I think. Do you need anything? I’ve got tons of heirloom tomatoes (I can email you a list if you want), and I just got another seed order in, including ‘Rosa Bianca’ eggplant and ‘Black Beauty’ zucchini. (Nothing all that exciting—old standbys that I grow every year.)

    Let me know ;-)

    Reply to Colleen's comment

  3. Frugal Trenches on January 26, 2009 at 7:16 am

    Oh my. Oh my. Oh my.

    Do you think it would ship to England?

    Reply to Frugal Trenches's comment

  4. Judy on January 26, 2009 at 7:40 am

    I would love to take you up on your offer for some seeds :-) These are the prettiest pumpkins. I also save seed from veggies that I find. My favorite is saving tomato seeds. I found some cool heirloom tomatoes at a local organic shop and saved some black tomato seeds and a striped “stuffing” tomato seeds.

    Reply to Judy's comment

  5. farm mom on January 26, 2009 at 9:58 am

    Have you had success planting seeds from bought pumpkins? I’ve always heard that pumpkins/squash can be tricky because of the cross pollination factor, and that the seeds might not ring true. As I don’t hand pollinate either, I’ve been nervous about saving pumpkin/squash seeds as I have had seeds spring up here on their own and grow those strange frankenfruit of nature’s cross pollination. (You know, a sort of zuchinni/pumpkin. Or that pumpkin that looks normal until you crack it open and it’s just not right.)

    Reply to farm mom's comment

  6. Bridgett on January 26, 2009 at 10:00 am

    I love to bake and have always wanted to try using “real” pumpkin. Thanks for the great pics. It looks amazing! I roasted a spaghetti squash yesterday and was wondering if I could save all of those seeds to plant. Great timing! I enjoy your blog by the way. I’m a fellow Ohioan, southern though.

    Reply to Bridgett's comment

  7. Susy on January 26, 2009 at 10:09 am

    I’ve had great luck growing butternut squash from seed, they’re usually better than the ones from the seed I buy. This past year the volunteer plants that sprung from my compost pile produced the biggest best tasting butternuts, they also seem to be much more disease resistant. All the ones I bought, started the seeds for and carefully planted produced tiny fruits or didn’t fruit at all or were diseased.

    Reply to Susy's comment

  8. Joe on January 26, 2009 at 2:54 pm

    That really is one beautiful pumpkin, and the pie looks absolutely delicious. I have always wanted to grow Rouge Vif d’Etampes’…maybe this will be the year. You would probably need a pretty huge container, though, wouldn’t you?

    Great photos…you have talent! And how did you make that professional-looking seed packet?

    Reply to Joe's comment

  9. Susy on January 26, 2009 at 3:03 pm

    I’m guessing a big container would be needed as well. I’m considering planting one in my compost pile to see what happens.

    I actually used Pages on my mac for my seed packet. I found an image of a seed packet and liked it so I kind of copied it. I measured out how much I would need for the side flaps and added cutting lines and voila, a seed packet was born. I made it so that it’s easy to drop in photos of whatever I’m putting inside and it’s easy to change the name of the item as well.

    Reply to Susy's comment

  10. warren on January 26, 2009 at 3:45 pm

    I’d be interested in some seeds if you still have any left. We saved seeds from some sort of melon this year. I know little about it other than it was a party in my mouth when I ate it. I don’t know what we’ll get but I will try!

    We also plant green striped cushaw and make pies with them as well. Best pumpkin pie I ever had was made with our own cushaw squash. I saved some seeds from ours so we’ll see how they do this year.

    Reply to warren's comment

  11. Allie on January 26, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    That pumpkin is beautiful!

    Reply to Allie's comment

  12. Judy on January 26, 2009 at 9:05 pm

    Beautiful pumpkin! I have green banana squash that I got from my mother. She has been growing them for years. This year I saved seed from them as well as her butternuts and plan to grow them in the garden. It usually takes us several meals to get through an entire banana squash but they are Oh so tasty.

    Reply to Judy's comment

  13. Kelly on January 27, 2009 at 8:57 am

    YUMMY!!! And so impressive. I really am a slacker!

    Reply to Kelly's comment

  14. deborah on January 27, 2009 at 5:56 pm

    Now I’m really excited! I’m growing Rouge Vif d’Etampes for the first time this year. What a beautiful pumpkin and what gorgeous pictures. I dont’ have a mac or many graphic design skills, but you’ve inspired me to try to make my own seed packets. Thanks!

    Reply to deborah's comment

  15. Chicago Mike on January 27, 2009 at 8:34 pm

    Hey Suzy,

    I have very little saved seed, but would love to trade with you if you are still interested and have seeds left. Seed saving is something will will be doing a lot more of.

    I have a great tasting small watermelon (like a Sugar Baby) and I have some heirloom tomatoes.

    Your choice!

    If you are interested, shoot me an email at the address here. (assuming you can see it! if not let me know.)


    Chicago Mike

    Reply to Chicago Mike's comment

  16. Andres on January 29, 2009 at 10:46 am

    Love your blog, great photos of the pumpkin. Would you be willing to post your seed packet template you created?

    Reply to Andres's comment

  17. Kelly on January 31, 2009 at 5:49 pm

    Wow – what a beautiful pumpkin! And I love that it was an almost all-local endeavour. Thanks for stopping by my blog – I’ll definitely be following along in yours :).

    Reply to Kelly's comment

  18. Trading Seeds | Chiot's Run on February 24, 2009 at 5:00 am

    […] few of you commented on my Cinderella Pumpkin post about being interested in some seeds. I mailed those off last week (so if you wanted some and […]

    Reply to Trading Seeds | Chiot’s Run's comment

    • gloria on October 7, 2011 at 4:13 am

      Be careful and don’t send seeds by mail as they get irradiated when they go thru the xray machines and generally are sterile.

      I had someone mail me some kaffir lime seeds and they mailed it so none of them ever germinated. Same thing with some other seeds that the seed company should have known better than to mail. every one of their seeds was dead.

      Reply to gloria's comment

  19. Pam on February 28, 2009 at 3:30 pm

    Starting a garden for the first time this year. Your site is inspiring! If you would be so generous, I would love to try the Cinderella Pumpkin seeds.

    Most sincerely,


    Reply to Pam's comment

  20. Pam on April 7, 2009 at 10:22 am

    Dear Susie,

    I just got my seeds! Thank you. They arrived torn open, mangled, with the outer part of the seeds off, but many look like they still want to grow up to be pumpkins. I hope my amateur skills can make that happen.

    Most gratefully yours,


    Reply to Pam's comment

  21. Treva Taglieri on April 8, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    Beautiful pumpkin…I would love to try it…I don’t have any seeds to send you as this is my first gardening year…but if I have any luck, I will have some come next fall.

    If you have any seeds left, I would be grateful for you to send some.


    Reply to Treva Taglieri's comment

  22. Susie Braseth on May 4, 2009 at 2:22 pm

    How do I get some seeds for the French cinderella pumpkin. I can’t find them around here. The usual place I get them from locally didn’t have them this year. Thank you for your site.

    Reply to Susie Braseth's comment

  23. bill on August 29, 2009 at 11:38 pm

    where did you buy those seeds? that you show on your site that is the 9th h picture

    thanks.. bill

    Reply to bill's comment

    • Susy on August 30, 2009 at 7:56 am

      I made the packet on my computer.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  24. Tree on September 3, 2009 at 3:54 pm

    Now I am going to have to look this one up. If I can’t get it locally you have any seeds you would like to sell me?
    How do you know what plants are open polinated (or those that can be grown from seeds from the plant) as opposed to cross-polinated or in need of another plant of a similar variety near by?
    .-= Tree´s last blog ..MY TOWEL HANDS OFF =-.

    Reply to Tree's comment

  25. Tamara on September 9, 2009 at 9:35 pm

    I am a farmer growing Cinderella pumpkins for the first time for market. I am just starting to sell them and am just searching prices right now. I will tell customers how good the pies can be from them!

    Anyway you can save seeds from open-pollinated heirloom varieties BUT they will only come true to seed if no other squashes were grown in the area. Otherwise they will be cross-pollinated with other varieties. That can be ok, but you can’t profess the seeds are true to type unless the flowers were isolated until fruited. The little fuzzy bees just go from flower to flower spreading all the pollen everywhere.

    Reply to Tamara's comment

  26. Renee on September 17, 2009 at 11:09 pm

    I love pumpkin now that I’ve had it fresh! It’ll soon be time to go pumpkin picking and to the farmer’s market. I’d love to know how to grow the seeds but I usually roast them since I don’t know what to do.
    .-= Renee´s last blog ..Keepsake Pajamas! =-.

    Reply to Renee's comment

  27. Michelle on October 9, 2009 at 9:03 am

    Your photos are gorgeous. Just found your blog while searching Cinderella pumpkins. I bought one in New Hampshire and I am roasting it as I type. May I ask, is there any trick for drying out the seeds? I saved about 4 dozen of them. (right now they’re just wet and slimy!) I am a new homeowner and would like to collect seeds, and trade them as the years go by, heirlooms of course!
    I am very interested in the organic garden, composting, ect. My guy is building me a raised garden with some of the space we have.
    Thank you for your blog. I can’t wait to read how your pumpkins grew this year.

    Reply to Michelle's comment

  28. Yvette on October 21, 2009 at 10:24 am

    If anyone is looking to order these seeds, Baker Creek Seed Co. carries them. I bought some last year and they turned out beautiful.

    Reply to Yvette's comment

  29. Wrecka on October 22, 2009 at 10:43 pm

    Like Michelle I found your blog while searching rouge vif d’etampes. My parents are long time organic gardeners and now that they are retired are active at local farm markets and specialize in heirloom vegetables. As a child I would grow pumpkins and gourds and as an adult have always been curious about this variety. I bought one a Trader Joes recently. I found the color, flavor and yield to be far superior to ANY pie pumpkin I have ever encountered (avid pumpkin pie baker). Thank you for your seed saving suggestion, these will be growing in my parents pumpkin patch next year! Also thank you for all the links to the wonderful food blogs! Cheers!

    Reply to Wrecka's comment

  30. Ashley on March 14, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    I just stumbled on your blog when I was trying to decide if Cinderella pumpkins were good pie pumpkins and I am so pleased I found it. Your blog is delightful and I LOVE the seed packets you designed yourself. I just bought a house so it’s my first spring where I have the yard to grow a garden and I’m having way too much fun. I bookmarked your blog and I look forward to reading what you have to say in the future :-)

    Reply to Ashley's comment

  31. Sharon on March 26, 2010 at 8:31 pm

    Hi I live in new zealand & grew some of these pumpkins in my little garden i got 3 huge fruit off 1 vine & i must say they do look spectacular hav,nt tried eating them yet though

    Reply to Sharon's comment

  32. Rick de Blecourt on July 3, 2010 at 8:02 am

    That pie looks excellent. I feel the same way about crust, some things just shouldn’t be wet.
    For Thanksgiving I made my wife a homemade pumpkin pie using the ‘Musque de Provence’ French heirloom pumpkin we had purchased from a local Farmers’ Market in the fall (delicious).
    You can also slice these very thin and eat them raw, almost like a melon (just cut off the rind).
    Excellent idea with the squeezo, last fall I just baked and froze. I will try with our squeezo on this years crop (we saved seeds from ours as well). My wife and I started a 10,000+ sq ft garden this year, no need for the gym!
    Nice choice of KithchenAide oven, we have the same type.
    If your husband takes all your different photos tell him that he does excellent work, they all look beautiful!

    Reply to Rick de Blecourt's comment

  33. Jennifer Tan - Syrendell on August 10, 2010 at 9:40 pm

    Gorgeous pumpkin! Thanks for posting a link to this via flickr for me. I think that this is the same type. Now, I’m inspired to save the seeds for next year! :)

    Reply to Jennifer Tan – Syrendell's comment

  34. So what. | The Renegade Farmer on September 17, 2010 at 5:23 pm

    […] lbs of exuberant dog energy wandering around my house, wondering what to do with itself.  Earlier, I roasted a Cinderella Pumpkin, courtesy of our CSA.  I cut it in half, scooped out the flesh, sorted through it and pulled out […]

    Reply to So what. | The Renegade Farmer's comment

  35. […] in Sweet and Sour Sauce (for which I got a gloriously beautiful Rouge Vif Etampes pumpkin from Trader […]

    Reply to Giddy (or, Plans for Cooking Day!) « Only Sometimes Clever's comment

  36. Pumpkin Cheesecake « Bakery Bites on November 10, 2010 at 2:44 pm

    […] have a great giant Cinderella pumpkin taking over one of my few wooden stools, remnants of Halloween festivities. I don’t have the […]

    Reply to Pumpkin Cheesecake « Bakery Bites's comment

  37. » rouge vif d’etampes pumpkin Bakery Days on November 16, 2010 at 3:36 am

    […] due to the lack of activity taking place. It was there that a farmer introduced me to rouge vif d’etampes, a cinderella pumpkin great for baking sweets. So while I’ve got thoughts of pumpkin risotto […]

    Reply to » rouge vif d’etampes pumpkin Bakery Days's comment

  38. Rhonda on November 16, 2010 at 3:00 pm

    Thank you for having this information about this pumpkin, I just recently received this pumpkin in my GFF share this week and was wondering what am I suppose to do :). This information helps a lot! Btw nice Cutco :)

    Reply to Rhonda's comment

    • Susy on November 16, 2010 at 3:07 pm

      Oh I do love my Cutco!

      Reply to Susy's comment

  39. donna lynn on November 21, 2010 at 11:09 am

    I just found your site. I love the Rouge Vif d’Etampes. I have lots of pumpkins, different kinds every year. I grew some of my own this year. I love your site.

    Reply to donna lynn's comment

  40. Bev Burtschell on July 21, 2011 at 7:28 pm

    I tried a pumpkin pie mix made with Cinderella pumpkin last fall. A gift from a friend who makes a bunch of mix and froze in one liter water bottles. It was the best pumpkin pie ever! and I normally don’t care for it. (Maybe it’s the normal soggy crust) Anyway, started hunting and find it’s only available for a short period of time in local market and was to late to order seed. They were all out! :( Would love seed if you have any.

    I haven’t gardened for several years until this year…have a beautiful small garden but it is not bearing yet. I do have an heirloom bean seed. I save them from a small amount I got several years ago in Tn. They are called Brean Stevens Cornfield beans and they are the best bean! Let me know if you are interested or still have “Cinderellas”

    Enjoying your blog! Thank you

    Reply to Bev Burtschell's comment

  41. Primal Pumpkin maddness « The Cavewoman Cafe on November 3, 2011 at 12:35 am

    […] cooking. The first step is to find a nice fat sugar or pie pumpkin, like “sugar baby” or “Cinderella.” (Cinderella pumpkins look like they are out of a fairy tale. Flat and vibrant orange with […]

    Reply to Primal Pumpkin maddness « The Cavewoman Cafe's comment

  42. Greg Cozza on November 17, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    I loved your article on the Cinderella pumpkin. I am about to bake my first one and wanted some more information before doing do. Thanks for the great info and the tip on making pumpkin pie without crust. Will have to try that. Do you have to do anything special so that the custard will release from the bottom of the pan?

    Reply to Greg Cozza's comment

    • Susy on November 17, 2011 at 4:18 pm

      Nope nothing special. I find the custard releases quite well. You could bake in individual ramekins then you don’t have to worry about removing it from the container for serving!

      Reply to Susy's comment

  43. patti on September 11, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    Hi, I am a gardener and I grew a beautiful big Cinderella Pumpkin this year! I am going to puree the inside of it for pumpkin for Thanksgiving and will give many away to family and friends! It’s my favorite pumpkin to grow! I had to turn it over to get it orange on the front side of it! Thank you for all the tips! If anyone would like seeds I can send them some! I will have plenty! I put five seeds in this year and I got three pumpkins! I also feed them good with organic food! I can send you the pictures of it if anyone would like to see it! I am thinking of putting it in the Topsfield Fair this year! I am so proud of it! I know it’s worth a blue ribbon! Thank you for all your advise on how to bake them! God Bless You! Patti

    Reply to patti's comment

  44. Pikka on October 8, 2012 at 12:14 pm

    I grew these pumkins the summer of 1997 and steamed the flesh
    in a clam/fruit steamer type pot. I ran it though my food mill and
    it was still stringy. I ran it through 2 more times until it was smooth.
    It was watery so I put it in a cloth in a strainer overnight. Perfect
    puree in the morning. I made pumpkin pies with canned milk and
    used just a bit of the strained juice as part of the liquid. I used brown sugar instead of white, and went a wee bit heavy on the spices,
    using cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. My grandsons said it
    was the best pumpkin pie ever.

    That was the year I inherited a small amount of money and spent
    it all on food related items. I bought a freezer, canning jars,food
    mill, dehydrator, etc…and took my grandsons out to farms to pick
    fruits and veggies. We made jewel flavored pure strawberry fruit
    leather, so intense it had to be eaten in small pieces [seeded of course].
    I picked 70 pounds of apples and made my own apple pie mixes
    [sliced apples, spiced, cornstarch, butter, etc] and froze them. We
    picked berries and made jams to die for. Pickles from my sis in laws
    recipe were a real hit. On Sunday’s I took all my grandchildren to
    breakfast and only rule was juice or milk. I wanted them to
    remember me by the taste of real food. I didn’t spend one dime on
    toys, vacations, or electronics.

    I also took a permaculture course [2 week intensive, 12 -8 hour days] with my inheritance and in six weeks turned my yard into a paradise when I returned. But that’s another story. My cinderella pumpkins grew in the compost pile, even over the fence to the neighbor’s yard.[They didn’t mind].

    What we could do ……..

    Reply to Pikka's comment

  45. Chris on November 18, 2012 at 11:31 am

    I tried the recommended recipe from ‘Use Real Butter’ and fell in love. It was so easy and fun to make. No more crusts on my pumkin pies!

    Reply to Chris's comment

  46. Alex on January 14, 2013 at 4:40 pm

    I would suggest you to buy seeds from a professional seed growing company rather than saving seeds from the purchased pumpkin unless you know well the farmer who grew it and you are absolutely sure there was no other Cucurbita Maxima species at least 1 mile around the place where the pumpkin was grown. If there were other pumpkins closer than 1 mile, the seeds can be cross-pollinated by industrious bees and the quality of pumpkin you get from those seeds can be much worse.


    Reply to Alex's comment

  47. Ted on June 2, 2013 at 10:21 am

    Have grown these for many years, the best cooking pumpkin ever and very pretty. This is a vigorous grower and can send vines 40 to 50 feet if fed well, heavy producer. I move vines to keep the sprawl in check. Dry the seeds in the sun and once they are totally dry seal up and store in a cool dry place. The seeds are tasty when salted and roasted. I vacuum seal the puree and freeze, keeps more than a couple of years this way. Trying a new method this year planting the three sisters corn, beans and pumpkins together. Have ten 100 foot rows, growing to sell.

    Reply to Ted's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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