Pumpkins, A Versatile Fruit

 
 

The fall season brings changing leaves, cooler weather, and seasonal produce, which includes a whole lot of pumpkins! Though pumpkins are a fruit, they are in the category of gourds and squashes. Pumpkins come in varied colors, shapes and sizes. With ties to Halloween pumpkin carvings and Thanksgiving decorations, even pumpkin pie, the pumpkin is truly a unique and versatile fruit that has both a historical and culture significance. It even has its own holiday, National Pumpkin Day, on October 26.

What’s more, pumpkins are a sustainable food that provide a variety of preparations, allowing you to use the entire fruit. Here are some examples:

Pumpkin Puree

Pumpkin Puree

  1. Cut the pumpkin in half lengthwise.
  2. Remove seeds and set aside. Ensure you only have the pulp and shell of the pumpkin remaining.
  3. Pour your choice of oil inside and outside of the pumpkin halves.
  4. Place pumpkin halves on a baking sheet and bake in the oven at 350 degrees for approximately an hour. * Timing varies based on pumpkin size *
  5. Remove from the oven and scrape the inside of the pumpkin into a container.
  6. Blend the insides of the pumpkin.
  7. Season to your liking.
Pumpkin Seeds Snack

Quick Pan-Fried Pumpkin Seeds Snack:

  1. Scoop out seeds from inside of the pumpkin.
  2. Remove any pulp or strings attached to the seeds (use this for your puree!)
  3. Rinse pumpkin seeds and set them aside to dry.
  4. Pour and evenly distribute oil in a pan and let the oil preheat.
  5. Add pumpkin seeds and stir seeds until they are golden tint.
  6. Remove from heat and dd any seasoning you want to pumpkin seeds.
Pumpkin Bisque

Pumpkin Bisque

  1. Cut the pumpkin in half lengthwise.
  2. Remove seeds and ensure you only have the pulp and shell of the pumpkin remaining.
  3. Pour your choice of oil inside and outside of the pumpkin halves.
  4. Place pumpkin halves on a baking sheet and bake in the oven at 350 degrees for approximately an hour. * Timing varies based on pumpkin size *
  5. Preheat stovetop and add preferred oil to a pot.
  6. Slice onions, garlic or any other vegetables and place them in the pot to cook.
  7. Slice the pumpkin halves into smaller pieces to fit in the pot.
  8. Place pumpkin pieces and stir with vegetables, allowing the pumpkin to break up into smaller pieces when cooking.
  9. Add your choice of seasonings to give extra flavor.
  10. Add your broth of choice to make into a soup consistency.
  11. Add coconut milk or heavy cream to make the soup creamy.
  12. Once the ingredients are cooked, blend all the ingredients together.
Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin Pie

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Make pumpkin puree.
  3. Prepare pie crust or buy premade pie crust.
  4. Crack open and whisk two eggs in a container.
  5. Add half cup of any kind of sugar into container.
  6. Add half a teaspoon of salt into container.
  7. Add one teaspoon of cinnamon and ginger into container.
  8. Add 2 cups of pumpkin puree into container. Use the puree you made!
  9. Add 12 ounces of heavy whip or evaporated milk into container.
  10. Stir mix until smooth consistency.
  11. Add pumpkin mix inside of the pie crust.
  12. Insert pie into oven and bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes.
  13. Lower the oven to 350 degrees and let it bake for 50 more minutes.
  14. Take out of the oven and let the pumpkin pie cool until it reaches room temperature.

That’s pumpkin four different ways! Happy National Pumpkin Day and cheers to this beautiful and complex fruit.

 

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