Leave it to Kate to bring something as truly unique as these
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First blush walking into the Eerie Edibles Swap, “Oh, how cool! Somebody carved little pumpkins.”
Hold the phone
Pause and examine. This is far from ordinary. Is there something IN them?
Wild rice, cranberries, almonds, and sage; all baked in
Upon a completed agreement to trade, one got their pick of scary faces. I chose one that seemed the happiest, in the spookiest sort of way
Driving home, my husband commented, and I hadn't thought of it
“Seriously, do you realize how much effort carving those little pumpkins had to have been? I mean, you couldn't puncture the skin and make it work. She did it perfectly.”
And so the very next evening, we just couldn't resist
My husband coated a ham steak in dijon mustard and honey, grilled it for a few minutes on each side
As we scooped our pumpkin and rice mix out of our spooky friend, it was like a part of her was there having dinner right alongside us
THAT was the best part of all
ps: Kate reveals all of her spooky pumpkins, making secrets to her blog. Be sure to check it out!
A bit of Pumpkin Trivia – Pie Pumpkins vs. Carving Pumpkins
I've learned a heck of a lot about pumpkins during this process.
The best pumpkins to use in cooking and baking are much smaller than the treasures you'd discover in a pumpkin patch. They're called “Pie Pumpkins” and are found at your local grocery.
Aside from their smaller stature (1-2 pounds on average), they're closer to a uniform shape and color than a pumpkin used for carving. Their skin is quite a bit smoother, as well.
Another difference is their tender flesh, which makes the cooking process easier. They also have better texture (less grainy) and are sweeter.
Contrast this with those found in the pumpkin patch
They're designed to make carving easier, having thinner shells and typically less flesh on the inside. Also, their flesh is grainier and stringy
The Moral of the Story
While many foodie enthusiasts tend to prefer cooking with a pie pumpkin over a carving pumpkin, never fear, you still can put your good ‘ol jack o lantern to use
The most common challenge with cooking a carving pumpkin is too much moisture.
So, after taking out the flesh, put it in a bowl, and let it sit in the fridge for a few hours.
This should allow for water to separate, and you'll be able to drain it off before use