Cutting up JACK

They see a Jack-o-Lantern. I see Vitamin A just begging to be ingested.

It is not the fact that I have two sets of twins that makes me different from almost everyone else I know. It is the fact that I revel in finding as many ways as possible for us to eat Jack. . .the halloween Jack-o-Lantern that is.

But, I can’t not do it. When you think of all the Vitamin A and C and the potassium that a single serving of pumpkin provides (see this link on the nutritional value of pumpkin) Scary or happy–Jack is where it is at!

This year (oh Joy!) we had FOUR pumpkins–three of which were carved and lit up for the big evening. One pumpkin, the poor outcast, still sits untouched on the porch. (I do have my sights on him, though!)

So the afternoon of November 1 (but before the mold made dibs) I brought the largest of the three jack-o-lanterns into the kitchen. Grabbing the large kitchen knife. . .I got to work.

In retrospect, I probably should have waited until the two year old was napping to being the pumpkin dissection because as soon as he saw me cut into the pumpkin his he yelled, “DON’T CUT THE PUMPKIN, MOMMY!”



In previous years I’ve cut the pumpkin into chunks and roasted the pumpkin chunks and then pureed them. I would pour the puree into ice cube trays and freeze. This year I needed a different plan–one not so labor intensive. I cut slices off of the pumpkin, cut the skin off and then cut those slices into smaller cubes. I put the cubes into freezer bags. When I want to add pumpkin to a dish, then I can take a handful of the cubes, microwave them and then puree them with my mini cuisinart. I’ll then add them with abandon to everything I can think of!


Why all this work? Pumpkin, when cooked, has a very mild taste and it is virtually undetectable in most dishes. I’ve baked it into cakes, added it to stews pancake batter, macaroni and cheese and even added it to meat loaf. Pumpkin is so loaded with anti-oxidants to me upcycling Jack is a no brainer!



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