Halloween is just around the corner and while people in Hong Kong naturally celebrate with costumes and candy, many others also celebrate with the time-honoured tradition of pumpkins, either using them in Halloween-themed recipes or making jack-o’-lanterns.
But what happens when the candy is gone and the costumes are back in the closet? Most of the time, pumpkins end up in the dustbin and then the landfill, where they can’t decompose to fertilise plants and soil like they would in nature and instead, release methane. Avoid this unnecessary waste by reusing as many parts of the pumpkin as you can! Here are eight delicious recipes that you can make with various parts of a pumpkin.
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds With Cinnamon
This is a super simple and quick recipe! If you’re making a jack-o’-lantern, you’ll have to take out the insides, but be sure to keep them to one side.
- 3 tablespoons of butter
- 0.5 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon salt
- To get the seeds, place the mass of seeds in a colander and run under water to separate the seeds from the flesh.
- Then, place the seeds in a medium saucepan with 2 cups of water and 1 tablespoon of salt to the pan for every half cup of pumpkin seeds.
- Bring everything to a boil and then let it simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and drain. Leave on a single layer on a baking sheet lined with paper towels for 24 hours at room temperature.
- When the seeds are ready, preheat your oven to 165°C. Very lightly grease a large baking pan and then set aside.
- In a small bowl, mix the sugar, cinnamon and salt, and set aside.
- Melt the butter in a separate bowl on a stove. Remove the bowl and stir in the vanilla.
- Mix in the pumpkin seeds until they’re evenly coated.
- Add the dry ingredients to the seed and mix.
- Spread the seeds on the prepared baking pan from Step 3 in a single layer.
- Bake the seeds in the oven for 25-35 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, until the seeds begin to brown.
- Once they’re done, transfer them to another pan lined with wax paper.
This is a lovely, warming soup, perfect for Fall!
- 15g butter
- 1 brown onion
- 1 garlic clove
- 2.5g turmeric powder
- 2.5g paprika
- 700g pumpkin chunks
- 500ml vegetable stock
- 30g Greek yoghurt
- Stick blender (a potato masher works, too!)
- Dice the garlic and onion and chop up the pumpkin into smaller, 2cm chunks
- In a large pan, melt butter and add onion and garlic until they’re soft. Add the pumpkin and spices into the pan for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Pour the stock, sprinkle salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Let it simmer for 10 minutes or until the pumpkin is very soft. Then, remove the pot from the heat and blend all the ingredients together with a stick blender.
- You’re done! Serve with yoghurt swirled through the top of each serving.
Pumpkin purée is incredibly versatile, as you’ll see in some of the later recipes. You can use it in chilis, pumpkin butter and even smoothies and as coffee creamer!
- Before cutting into the pumpkin, wash the skin well to remove any dirt
- Cut into halves or quarters depending on the size of the pumpkin. Remove the skin and chop the pumpkin into 2.5cm cubes.
- Place the pumpkin into a pan, cover with water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes, until the pumpkin is cooked. You’ll know if it’s cooked when it is easily pierced by the tip of a sharp knife.
- Put the pumpkin in a colander to drain. Return the drained pumpkin to the hot saucepan for a few minutes to remove excess moisture.
- Put the pumpkin in a food processor (or a blender) and blend until smooth.
- Place the purée in an airtight container and store in the fridge.
Pumpkin & Olive Muffins
These are perfect for breakfast or quick healthy on-the-go snacks.
- 3 cups self-raising flour
- 3 eggs
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- Pumpkin purée
- 0.5 cup whole black pitted olives
- 250ml milk
- 2 tablespoon thyme
- 1 cup baby spinach
- 0.5 teaspoon salt
- 0.25 teaspoon pepper
- Preheat the oven to 210°C. Spray a muffin tin with olive oil and line each mould with baking paper. In a large mixing bowl, whisk oil and eggs together until it’s pale in colour. Add milk, then the tomato purée and whisk all together until smooth.
- Fold in the flour, salt and pepper until it’s just combined (the batter should be lumpy).
- Roughly chop the olives and spinach and add to the mixture with the thyme. Gently fold until just combined.
- Spoon batter to fill each muffin tin and place in the oven.
- Bake at 210°C for 2 minutes and then reduce heat to 180°C and bake for 20 minutes. Leave the muffins to cool in the oven for 2 minutes before removing.
- Wait until cool and then enjoy!
Pumpkin and Chickpea Bake
This is a quick, mid-week meal that’s packed with veggies!
- 420g chickpeas
- 150g green beans
- 1.5 teaspoons cumin
- 0.5 teaspoon garlic powder
- 200g pumpkin cubes
- 60g brown onion
- 150g brussels sprouts
- 60ml olive oil
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 pinch pepper
- Preheat the oven to 200°C. Rinse and drain the chickpeas, top and tail the green beans, chop the onions, chop the tail off the brussels sprouts and then halve them, and dice the pumpkin, ensuring the skin has been removed.
- Put some baking paper on a tray and put all the veggies and chickpeas on it. Coat the ingredients in olive oil, and distribute evenly across the tray. Sprinkle with the cumin, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
- Cook in the oven for 25 minutes, or until most of the ingredients have turned golden and/or are cooked through.
This hummus is perfect as a chip or veggie dip!
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 3 cloves garlic
- 0.75 teaspoon salt
- 2 cans of garbanzo beans, drained
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 430g pumpkin purée
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 0.5 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 0.25 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
- 1 pinch paprika
- Blend lemon juice, tahini, garlic and salt together in a blender. Add the garbanzo beans and olive oil and blend until smooth. Add the pumpkin, cumin and cayenne pepper and again, blend until smooth. Put hummus in the fridge for at least 2 hours.
- Fold the pumpkin seeds into the hummus and sprinkle paprika on top.
Pumpkin Skin Chips
Another super easy recipe that’s delicious and healthy.
- Pumpkin (whatever size you have will work)
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- A dash of salt
- A dash of pepper
- Preheat the oven to 200°C. Add aluminium foil to a baking tray and drizzle the oil onto the foil.
- Cut off the skin from the pumpkin.
- Add a dash of salt, pepper and oil to the pumpkin skins and cook them for 10-15 minutes on one side and then rotate and cook on the other side.
- Wait until cool, and then enjoy!
Tip: try sprinkling paprika on the skins before they go in the oven!
Try these as a substitute for your normal Sunday morning pancakes.
- 2 tablespoon coconut flour
- 0.5 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 0.5 teaspoon baking powder
- Pinch of salt
- 0.5 cup of pumpkin purée
- 2 large eggs
- 0.5 cup fresh egg whites
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- In a small bowl, mix the coconut flour, cinnamon, baking powder and salt.
- In a separate, medium-sized bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, eggs, egg whites, vanilla extract and sugar.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk until smooth.
- Heat a pan with cooking spray or oil and cook the batter into pancakes. Cook each side for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Serve immediately and enjoy with maple syrup.
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