Food Information


The pumpkin is the most colorful and shapely winter squash and comes
in a wide variety of sizes. Some varieties that have been coddled by farmers competing in contests have reached weights of two hundred or even three hundred pounds. Pumpkins, along with Indian corn and ornamental gourds, are symbols of autumn. Though it can be served as a cooked vegetable or used in making pies, the pumpkin is primarily used for decorative purposes. Ninety-nine percent of the fresh pumpkins sold in the marketplace are purchased in the two-to-three-week period prior to Halloween. The day after Halloween, the unsold pumpkins have about as much value as the unsold Christmas tree on Christmas day.
The traditional symmetrical shaped, deep orange colored pumpkins
used to make jack-o'-lanterns on Halloween are not the best variety to use for cooking or baking pies. They are far too stringy. A less colorful, squat, light brown variety called the cheese pumpkin is the best cooking variety. A small orange skinned variety called the sugar pumpkin is also quite good.

Baking a pumpkin pie using fresh pumpkin is usually more trouble
than it is worth. Using canned pumpkin requires a lot less effort, usually costs less, and the end product is as good as if not better than a pumpkin pie made from fresh pumpkin.

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