Pumpkin Tutorial

Pumpkins yield a LOT of food and they are so cheap.  I picked up three this past weekend for $5.00 each.  Here's one and I'll show you how to process it.

First wash the outside of it.  Then cut it in half.  I like to put it on it's side with the stem facing the wall, not up.  Have a larger colander for the meat you'll put in it and a smaller one for the seeds. 

 Take all the seeds out of the pumpkin with as little pulp as possible and put them in a colander
 Set the colander in the sink and run water over it as you rinse and pick your way through the seeds removing any of the stringy pulp.  Throw the pulp away.

Boil them in salted water just as you would pasta for about 10 minutes.  Drain.  Preheat your oven to 400°.  Coat the bottom of a roasting pan with olive oil.  I salt mine, but you can also sprinkle some chili powder on them.  They're great set on the table for people to add to their soups or to snack on.  Spread the seeds in a single layer in your pan.  Bake about 10-15 minutes til they are brown.  Keep checking so you don't burn them.  Put the pan on a rack and let them cool.  Store them in baggies or in a canning jar.

Put a very sharp knife in as shown below next to the stem and bring it down.  Do the same on the other side.  In this way make 4 wedges.  You'll be able to pull up on each wedge and snap it off leaving just the stem.

We don't want to be wasteful though so slice thinly the pulp off of the stem, then slice the meat off.  Cut the meat into chunks and put it in your large colander.  Toss the stem  Messy, huh?

 Once you have your pumpkin cut into wedges take the side of a spoon and scrape all the pulp and throw it away.

Now cut those wedges into strips like so. 

 Cut the rind off like so and toss that in the garbage and put the flesh in the bigger colander.  Once your colander is full, rinse the flesh, then pat dry.

I've filled the colander and I'm only a third of the way done!

 Keep going until you are finished.  Your arms and hands will get tired but you'll be happy with what you get in the end.  I ended up with a dozen freezer bags full of sliced pumpkin.

That night I dredged one bag of wedges in egg then flour and fried them up as the main course.  I have 11 bags left in the freezer and 2 more pumpkins outside left to process!  

At this point if you are using this pumpkin in a recipe that calls for canned or mashed pumpkin, just cut it into chunks and treat it like you're making mashed potatoes.  Boil them til you think you can mash them up!

1 comment:

  1. You make it look so doable!! The girls and I are going to have to try this. I have a recipe for gluten free pumpkin waffles I want to try and I LOVE pumpkin seeds! Thanks Michelle!