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how to cook your halloween pumpkin

Halloween is such a quintessentially north american time of year. I was feeling pretty homesick, and then one of my employers sent me a message asking if I could come in and make halloween dinner for 10 kids and ‘walk halloween’. I honestly had no idea what she meant by that, but it turned out that they had decided to attempt trick or treating. I was, ironically, the only one without a costume. No matter, this little monkey painted my face for me (she said I was a clown):

The kids put in a valiant effort at trick or treating in a place where Halloween isn’t really a thing. Of the doors they knocked on (including those with pumpkins outside) about 20% actually opened the door. Of those, about 50% had something to hand the kids; unwrapped gummy candies, loose potato chips, full sized extra dark chocolate bars (oooh, that’s *dark* chocolate, you’re not going to like that, I better…), some coins, and just a few wrapped candies. It was so haphazard and organic. It was my first time standing at the end of the driveway watching the kids march up to each door. I absolutely loved it.

Yesterday I carved my pumpkin; today I cooked it. I know lots of nay-sayers think that the jack o’ lantern pumpkins don’t have as much (or any) flavour compared to sugar pumpkins, but I *always* cook mine. It’s food! It’s going to become all kinds of delicious things. Definitely a pumpkin pie, which I sadly missed out on at Canadian Thanksgiving time. Probably pumpkin gnocci, which is my culinary nemesis. There’s a good chance of pumpkin muffins happening. Maybe pumpkin snickerdoodles. Or pumpkin taquitos!

If you’ve got a recently carved pumpkin, like in the last 24 hours or so, which has been chilling outside and is still in reasonably good shape, cook it up. Here is some info on how to process your pumpkin.

Two years ago: Curried Potato Chickpea Patties 

Pumpkin, and other yellow fleshed winter squash, are jam packed full of carotenes, which is the compound ultimately responsible for their colour, and also is a pre-cursor to Vitamin A (you need that so you can see). Pumpkin also contains a good dose of fibre, potassium, vitamin C, and manganese.

All text and photos © The Muffin Myth 2012

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