Thursday, October 13, 2005

Pumpkin Day...

This morning I decided to bake the pumpkins from my garden. I bought the seeds for Baby Pam pie pumpkins from an organic seed company in the spring, grew them among the zucchini and acorn squash, and harvested them almost a month ago. Despite the fact that the pumpkin took over the entire garden, growing long prickly vines over everything and choking out my acorn squash, the plants produced pathetically small amounts of actual pumpkins. My acorn squash only produced 4 squash out of 3 plants before the pumpkin took over their roots and killed them all. But the pumpkins, also 3 plants, produced only 7 pumpkins. They're small, but perfectly fine for pies and other recipes. Bugs got to one pumpkin, and my children broke open another, so this morning I had only 5.

I split the pumpkins in half, per the online instructions, and baked them cut-side down on a cookie sheet for about 1 1/2 hours at 350 degrees. The kids had a great time scooping out the seeds and pulp, which I saved for toasting, and the whole process was performed with very little mess, most of which was the kids' hands and clothes.

I am now toasting the seeds, about 3 cups worth, coated with about 3 teaspoons of oil and about 3/4 teaspoon salt, baking at 300 for about half an hour now. The recipe says 45 minutes with a little stirring, but I think these will take much longer since they were so wet and gooey. I picked out as much of the pulp as possible, but I'm starting to think I should have rinsed them before coating with oil and salt, as they were pretty slimy. We'll see how they turn out.

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