Are those pumpkins I see?

pumpkinsNow that the Autumn Equinox has “fall”en into our laps, pumpkins are sprouting up at the farmers markets, grocery stores, and decorating the patios around us. There are so many fantastic opportunities to use pumpkins, uncarved to a carved jack-o-lantern, guts and all.
Here are a couple of ideas for its multipurpose functions for these beautiful squashes.

 

To Start:  How to roast pumpkins 
Use this recipe on a how to guide of roasting thy pumpkin for the remaining ideas:

1. Wash the dirt off the pumpkin.

2. Say goodbye to the stem, with a knife. Use that same knife to slice the pumpkin in half.

3. Scoop out the seeds and the guts. I know this is still fun as an adult, but I know your little kiddos would love to help and feel the slimy guts run through their fingers!

4. Fill a baking sheet with enough water to keep the pumpkin moist
during baking but not enough to spill when baking.

*Tip: if using the recipe below for pumpkin skin chips, sprinkle with Olive Oil. If using for compost, leave it au natural!

5. Roast at 350 degrees until the pumpkin is soft in the middle to your touch. Remove from the oven.

6. Let it cool. Find a recipe below on how to use the parts of the pumpkin!

 

Pumpkins have feelings too…

That beautiful orange inside, between the skin and the guts, is what creates those magical pies we love during the winter festivities. It can be used for so, so much more though!

 

Baby Food1(Photo Credit: Baby Recipes)
 
Roasted Pumpkin with Chili Yoghurt & Coriander Sauce2(Photo Credit: Drizzle & Dip)

 

Ravioli!3

(Photo Credit: The Pioneer Woman)

 

Well, pumpkins do have guts!

That stringy guts are something magical in and of itself. It can be made into a stock that can be used for pumpkin based soups, as well as a puree for bread! See the recipes below to utilize these ideas, or go with the route of using these guts for your compost.

 

Pumpkin Gut Bread4
(Photo Credit: Eating Richly)
 
Pumpkin Gut Stock5
(Photo Credit: She Knows)
 

Skin and stems, oh my!

Have you heard all the rage about vegetable chips becoming the beloved household snack item? Take the skin from the pumpkin once it’s roasted (see roasting recipe above) and tear it into “chip” size bites, throw it on a baking sheet or a dehydrator.  Sprinkle the chips with a little bit of salt, chili powder and paprika to kick it into high gear, and dehydrate away. If you are using an oven, check this food hack.

 

Seeds are plentiful…

What are they good for? Well planting new pumpkins for next year that’s for sure!
Or how about a snack? Make these delicious roasted pumpkin seeds?6  (Photo Credit: Upchurch Farm)
 
Perhaps you love your feathered friends and want to give them whole nourishing feed. Check out what Birds and Blooms on how to do just that, another fun activity for you and the kiddos!

 

Happy eating!

 
 

Trissta Commentary by Trissta Hepting, WCG Outreach Intern
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