Place the pumpkin (sliced sides down) on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake it for 30 minutes in a preheated oven at 400 degrees. When it’s done, it will be fork-tender, the skin will have darkened and the whole thing will look like a deflated balloon.
When the pumpkin is ready, remove it from the oven and let it cool enough to remove and discard the skin. The flesh should fall off but if not, scrape it off using a spoon. Then run the flesh through a food processor until super smooth and a cheesecloth after to remove any extra bits and pieces. You should have a cup (or more) of pumpkin puree.
Now we are going to cook the pumpkin puree down by half in a saucepan over a medium-low heat for about 5 minutes. This will remove any excess water from the puree and intensify the flavor.
Once that pumpkin is cooked down to ½ cup, we are going to add ½ cup of water to the mixture. It’s a lot like using unsalted butter versus salted, we want control. By removing the water in the puree, we have more control over the final product’s consistency and flavor.
Add the 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and the remaining spices, salt and 2 tablespoons of the sugar to the mix, whisk it together and then bring it to a boil.
While that is coming to a boil, combine the flour and baking powder in a large mixing bowl.
Add the pumpkin mix to the flour mix and combine.
Heat the vegetable oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot set over medium-high heat until it reaches 375ºF.
Pipe the dough directly into the pan in 4-inch pieces, cutting off the pieces with a scissor. Fry until golden and crispy, 2 to 3 minutes. When the churro is close to done frying, the bubbles around it will subside.
Stir together the remaining sugar and cinnamon in a medium shallow bowl. Transfer the churros to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain the oil and immediately toss in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. I served mine up dusted with powered sugar and some homemade caramel.