3 cups heavy cream
1 vanilla bean split lengthwise, seeds scraped & reserved
1/3 cup raw cane sugar
¼ cup Chama River honey
7 large egg yolks, whisked well in a mixing bowl & reserved
¼ teaspoon each ground: cinnamon, cloves and ginger
¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2/3 cup pumpkin purée
1 tablespoon dark rum
1 teaspoon real vanilla extract
8 shallow custard ramekins
½ cup Demerara sugar
Place oven rack in the middle; preheat oven to 300 degrees. Combine sugar, honey, cream and vanilla pod in a saucepan and bring just to a simmer, stirring occasionally, ensuring that all the sugar has dissolved; remove from heat to let steep 10 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the water bath by placing the ramekins to be filled in a shallow pan in a single layer; add hot water to the pan, filling to just halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Remove vanilla pod from cream and discard. Slowly ladle a small amount (¼ cup) of the cream into the bowl of egg yolks, rapidly whisking at the same time. Repeat twice, continuing to whisk the whole time. Return contents of bowl to pan, pouring through a fine mesh strainer, and whisk just to incorporate, also whisking in the reserved vanilla seeds and all spices. Finally, whisk in the pumpkin, rum and vanilla extract.
Carefully ladle the custard into the ramekins, evenly distributing. Bake until set (about 25 minutes, to an internal temperature of 170 degrees). They should appear slightly wobbly in the center. Let cool on a rack 30 minutes, then move rack to the refrigerator until cold to the touch. Wrap with plastic and refrigerate overnight.
To serve: preheat the broiler. Unwrap the custards, and sprinkle a sufficient quantity of Demerara sugar over each to evenly and thinly cover the whole surface. Place custards under broiler just until the sugar has melted and caramelized, giving the appearance of parchment paper.
—Recipe courtesy Jeff Martin, Albuquerque, for the Rio Grande Community Farm Pumpkin-Palooza 2013