Due to their triffid-like tendency to spring up from nowhere and take over the veggie patch, the pumpkin is usually unjustly thought to be a second-class vegetable. The truth is, it’s a fruit, and needs to be given due respect for its versatility, style, and – at lower than $4 a kilo (and even much less for those who throw a number of seeds in your compost bin and wait) – its wonderful worth for cash.

A part of the Cucurbitaceae or squash household, pumpkins come in several styles and sizes; from the hefty Queensland blue with its ribbed blue-grey pores and skin, to the smaller Kent or Jap pumpkin, to the ever-popular cylindrically formed butternut with its candy orange flesh.

Pumpkins are additionally excessive in vitamin A, which is important for a wholesome immune system, and have an extended shelf life – retailer them at room temperature in a dry place they usually’ll be good for not less than a few weeks.


Jo Whitton, cookbook writer and founding father of Quirky Cooking, reckons roasting is the best way to go. “Roasted pumpkin will give a richer flavour than steamed pumpkin in mashes, pancakes and puddings,” she says.

Whitton’s most popular pumpkin is the butternut, which she cuts into wedges, drizzles with olive oil and sprinkles with salt. “Roast in a scorching oven till the seeds are crispy and the flesh is tender. You’ll be able to then eat the whole thing – pores and skin, seeds and all.”

For a particular brunch or supper dish, Whitton likes to bake eggs in mashed roasted pumpkin. She removes the seeds, provides garlic powder, onion flakes, salt, cayenne pepper, cinnamon and pepper, then mashes the pumpkin and spreads it on a baking tray. She then makes indents into the mash with a big spoon, cracks an egg into every one and bakes the entire thing.

Pumpkin pomegranate perfection: Nigel Slater’s recipe for roast pumpkin.
Pumpkin pomegranate perfection: Nigel Slater’s recipe for roast pumpkin. {Photograph}: Jonathan Lovekin/The Observer

Nigel Slater retains the pores and skin on roast pumpkin too, however slices his and bastes it in the previous couple of minutes with a paste of peanuts combined with pomegranate molasses, a bottle of which is able to set you again about $5.

Hassan M’souli, of Manly restaurant Out of Africa, likes the candy/tangy mixture of pomegranate and pumpkin too. He tosses heat roasted pumpkin with goat’s or feta cheese and pomegranate arils (or substitute with cheaper dried cranberries), then clothes it with olive oil and toasted pumpkin seeds.


Pumpkin soup is an everlasting Australian winter favorite. O Tama Carey, of Lankan Filling Station in Sydney, reckons that when you can boil pumpkin for soup, roasting earlier than including to inventory “is among the methods to coax the most effective flavour out”.

Fancy, not pricey: Yotam Ottolenghi’s roasted pumpkin soup with harissa and crisp chickpeas.
Fancy, not expensive: Yotam Ottolenghi’s roasted pumpkin soup with harissa and crisp chickpeas. {Photograph}: Louise Hagger/The Guardian. Meals styling: Emily Kydd

For pace, Felicity Cloake roasts her pumpkin for soup in cubes, including a handful of seeds to the baking tray in the direction of the top of roasting to make use of as a crunchy garnish. In the meantime, Yotam Ottolenghi makes use of roasted chickpeas in his pumpkin soup, amping up the flavour with spicy harissa paste (a long-lasting tube of which will be purchased at supermarkets for about $2.60).

M’souli likes to make his pumpkin soup “thick and rustic trying,” so advises not including an excessive amount of inventory or water, though he does give the thumbs as much as the addition of cream if you would like a extra luxuriant soup. He finishes his soup with chopped recent coriander, grated turmeric and a sprinkle of cumin.


When making a curry, select a pumpkin with a firmer flesh that holds collectively properly, says Carey. She makes use of butternut pumpkin and provides boiled peanuts to her Sri Lankan curry, whereas Annabel Crabb’s model has roasted spices, coconut milk and cashews. Crabb advises not including the pumpkin till the very finish, so it stays in neat cubes.

Whitton additionally contains lentils for an earthy distinction to the sweetness of pumpkin however prefers hers softer, cooking it in inventory with sauteed onion, garlic, spices, and lentils (and generally tomatoes) for about 25 minutes earlier than including coconut milk for the final 5 minutes of cooking.

Gradual cooking

Based on M’souli, in Morocco, pumpkin is most incessantly cooked with meat in a tagine. “It’s going to then tackle these meat juices,” he says. “My go-to is cooking pumpkin with apricots, raisins, prunes, saffron and caramelised onions in lamb tagine.”

Another way to use pumpkin (and chickpeas): Ben Tish’s Sicilian pumpkin stew.
One other approach to make use of pumpkin (and chickpeas): Ben Tish’s Sicilian pumpkin stew.

Ben Tish additionally travels the Moorish route within the recipe from his e-book, Sicilia, eschewing meat for a vegetarian pumpkin stew that includes chickpeas, raisins, cinnamon, olives and coriander.

Whitton likes to pair pumpkin with pork stomach, an affordable, unctuous lower, gradual cooking them in a hen inventory with onions and garlic till “the inventory reduces all the way down to a sticky sauce”, then including recent inexperienced beans on the finish of cooking.


“Pumpkins have such an inherent sweetness I’m shocked they don’t get utilized in desserts extra,” says Carey. She makes a baked pumpkin custard with cardamom, clove and cinnamon, plus a pinch of salt to mood the sweetness.

A creamy classic: pumpkin pie – show here is Felicity Cloake’s version.
A creamy basic: pumpkin pie – proven right here is Felicity Cloake’s model. {Photograph}: Dan Matthews/The Guardian. Meals styling: Jack Sargeson

Whitton provides pumpkin to her brownie batter or cooks pumpkin in coconut milk with spices to make a creamy pumpkin pie filling.


At all times roast additional pumpkin and maintain within the freezer, Whitton says.

“I exploit leftover roasted or steamed pumpkin in pancakes (mix with eggs and cook dinner in a crepe pan), in Moroccan cauliflower couscous salad, in frittatas, on pizzas or combined into scone dough for pumpkin scones,“ she says.

And for those who’re fortunate sufficient to have pumpkins in your backyard, whether or not accidentally or design, Carey factors out that in addition to the seeds, that are fantastic roasted (or attempt turning right into a pumpkin seed “salt” like Tom Hunt does), the flowers and the tendrils of the pumpkin are additionally edible.

A technique to make use of the flowers is to wilt them in a scorching pan with olive oil and blend by just-cooked pasta with bacon and grated parmesan, whereas the crunchy, gentle tendrils will be added to salad or stir-fried.

Source link

Previous articleMunching snacks in a healthy way
Next article10-minute healthy breakfast recipes to help lose belly fat


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here