With an estimated 10 million pumpkins grown every year in the UK, many of those are destined for a short existence of service. After having their guts pulled out and flesh sliced, they are left on the porch to rot as an edible candle holder. It’s a sad tale.
Unlike our American friends, we don’t have such a strong tradition of eating pumpkin, so as a result we throw away a whopping 18,000 tonnes of perfectly edible flesh.
At Coastal, we hate to see good food go to waste, so here are some of our favourite ways to make the most of this wonderful vegetable:
Richard loves pumpkin soup
“You can’t go wrong with a warming pumpkin soup on a chilly day. Simply roast the pumpkin flesh with plenty of seasoning and a good grating of nutmeg before blitzing up with vegetable stock for a hearty soup. Serve with a spider-web swirl of cream on the 31st.”
Edgy toasts the seeds
“Give the seeds a good wash and dry them with a tea-towel. Coat them with a generous twist of salt, pepper, cumin and chilli powder and toast them in a dry pan until they release nutty popcorn flavours. Enjoy them as a snack or scatter them on your meals for a delicious crunch. You can keep the seeds in a jar for a few days too.”
Steve bakes a pumpkin and sage lasagne
“Roast the pumpkin flesh until caramelised, and use to layer up lasagne sheets with fresh sage leaves and a rich béchamel sauce. Top with flaked almonds and parmesan before baking in a 190 degree oven until golden and unctuous.”
Tom composts his pumpkins
“Squash are full of nutrients like zinc and beta-carotene, which is perfect for a rich compost. Make sure you take the seeds out first though, or you could have more pumpkins sprouting out of the heap!”
Harry impresses with a spiced pumpkin cake with cream-cheese topping
“This cake is a real crowd-pleaser – great for people who love carrot cake. It’s got fudgy muscavado sugar and mixed spice to pack a punch too. You’ll love it. Follow the recipe here.”
Nigel feeds the birds
“Keep the birds happy by stuffing your carved pumpkin with food for the birds. It’s easy – squidge together bird seeds, raisins, peanuts and suet with your hands and push it into the carved pumpkin shell. Hang it on a tree and your garden will be a hive of activity throughout winter.”
What do you do with your left-over pumpkins?