More than just jack o’ lanterns, this squash makes a super side
Best to buy
Fresh pumpkins are available through the fall and winter.
Fresh pumpkin for baking
Cut in half, scrape out seeds, cut into pieces, remove the hard outer peel with a vegetable
peeler, and boil for 20 minutes in lightly salted water. Drain, mash, or puree in blender,
then season as you wish.
The whole deal
To bake a whole pumpkin, cut off the top with the stem to use as a lid. Scrape out the seeds
and pulp. Brush with melted butter, sprinkle
with salt, and if you like, add a touch of brown
sugar. Replace lid, and bake a 350°F (175°C) until tender for about 45 minutes.
Serve as is, cut into pieces, or scrape out the flesh and puree.
Preparation, uses, and tips
Best known when cooked, pureed, and well-spiced in holiday pies, pumpkins are also great in
soups, breads, and many other dishes.
To cook fresh pumpkin, scrape out the seeds
(known as pepitas). (Set the seeds aside if you plan to use them later.) Cut the pumpkin up
into small pieces, remove the hard outer peel with a vegetable peeler or sharp knife, and boil
the pieces for 15 or 20 minutes in lightly salted water. The pieces then can be drained and
mashed, or run through a blender to make pumpkin puree. The puree can be seasoned with salt,
pepper, and butter (if you like) and served as
a vegetable side dish, or used as the basis
for soups and other dishes.
In the Caribbean, pumpkin is braised into spicy, fragrant stews with chiles,
legumes, and sometimes meat. The French
cook it into soup and serve it decoratively in its own shell.
To bake a whole pumpkin, cut off the top with the stem to use as a lid. Scrape out the
seeds and pulp. Brush with melted butter, sprinkle with salt, and, if you like, add a touch of
sugar. Replace the lid and bake at 350°F (177°C) until tender, about 45 minutes.
Serve as is, cut into pieces, or scrape the flesh out and puree.
Pumpkin seed oil is dark brown, pleasantly
flavored, and popular in Austrian cuisine. To roast pumpkin seeds, wash them well, and spread
them in one layer in a pie tin or other baking dish; bake in a low oven (250°F or
121°C) for 15 or 20 minutes or until well-dried.
Large and round, pumpkins range in size from less than a pound (0.5kg) to more than 100
pounds (50kg). While a deep, cheerful orange is the color most familiar to Americans, pumpkins
also come in a variety of colors that range from white and peach to green and blue.
The many varieties of pumpkins are categorized into various classes including: Standard
Orange (Small), Standard Orange (Intermediate), Standard Orange (Large), Jumbo, White
Painting, the Cushaw Group, and the Naked-Seeded and Miniature kinds. The Small Sugar or New
England Pie type is of the Standard Orange (Small) variety, and, as its name suggests, this is
the standard type for pies; it weighs between 2 and 5 pounds (1kg–2.5kg).
Pumpkin (cooked, boiled, drained with salt), 1
Total Fat: 0.17g
*Foods that are an “excellent source” of a particular
nutrient provide 20% or more of the Recommended Daily Value, based upon United States
Department of Agriculture (USDA) guidelines. Foods that are a “good source” of a
particular nutrient provide between 10 and 20% of the USDA Recommended Daily Value.
Nutritional information and daily nutritional guidelines may vary in different countries.
Please consult the appropriate organization in your country for specific nutritional values
and the recommended daily guidelines.