Pumpkin Rescue is not a novelty it’s a real thing! We need to rescue pumpkins from landfill. Think of all the resources, sunshine and rain they have soaked up just to end in a rubbish tip. It seems wrong doesn’t it? Also it deprives us of lots of fun. Read on to see just what we mean.
Let’s squeeze out the last drop of sunshine and join in Pumpkin Rescue 2018
We love Halloween and it seems to become more and more popular as the years pass. One of the most treasured rituals is carving pumpkins. They are wonderful objects and jolly, bright colours as we approach the end of autumn. No wonder we want to squeeze out the last drop of sunshine as we prepare to enter winter.
Pumpkin Rescue developed as a consequence of how much pumpkin was wasted
When it came to making a Jack O Lantern most people didn’t even think of pumpkins as a food. Yes it’s great fun to carve out spooky teeth and a triangle nose and eyes but there’s more fun to be had. What if the insides were used to make a Halloween supper. That too could be part of the ritual. If we collect enough recipes to make a small recipe book families could choose a different pumpkin dish to make every year.
Why not rescue a pumpkin or two and do some communal cooking?
If there are a group of households or communities making lanterns then collect the flesh and choose some of these recipes and treat everyone to some wonderful warming food alongside the fun.
So what can you do with pumpkin once you have carved your lantern? There’s lots of ideas and Good Food Doncaster would like to share just a few of them.
Let’s kick off with Pumpkin Curry what a great way to have fun with Pumpkin Rescue this year
- 1 pumpkin , or squash (roughly 900g), 4 cm piece of ginger, 4 shallots
- 4 cloves of garlic, 1 fresh red chilli, 1 bunch fresh coriander
- groundnut oil, 1 teaspoon mustard seeds, 20 curry leaves
- 1 teaspoon turmeric, 1 x 400 g tin of chopped tomatoes 2 x 400 g tins of coconut milk 2 x 400 g tins of chickpeas
- Chop the pumpkin or squash into 3cm chunks and cut the ginger into matchsticks. Pick the coriander leaves and finely chop the stalks.
- Pour a good lug of groundnut oil into a large saucepan and place on a high heat. Add the ginger, garlic, red chilli and shallots, then reduce to a medium heat. Cook until golden, stirring occasionally, then add the mustard seeds, curry leaves, and coriander stalks and fry until the curry leaves go crispy. Add the turmeric, tomatoes and coconut milk. Bring to the boil, then add the pumpkin and chickpeas. Reduce to a low heat, cover with a lid and simmer for 45 minutes. Check occasionally and add a splash of water if it looks a bit dry.
- When the time’s up, take the lid off and cook for a further 15 minutes or so until the sauce is lovely and thick.
- Scatter with coriander leaves and serve with rice, naan bread and chutneys and dips on the side.
- 1 pumpkin , about 1kg, 2 cloves garlic , peeled, olive oil
- 1 red onion , peeled and finely chopped, 1 small handful black olives , stoned and chopped, 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary , leaves finely chopped
- 1 dried chilli, sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, 50 g basmati rice , washed and drained
- 75 g dried cranberries, 50 g shelled pistachio nuts, 1 tangerine , zest of
- 200 ml vegetable stock
- Pumpkins are so versatile, the things you can do with them are endless! Their flavour goes well with chilli, nutmeg and sage. If you’ve never cooked one before, you’re in for a real treat.
- Preheat the oven to 230ºC/450ºF/gas 8. Cut the lid off the pumpkin and reserve it. Scoop out the seeds with a spoon and keep them to one side. Make the hollow where the seeds were a little bigger by scooping out some more pumpkin flesh. Finely chop this pumpkin flesh and one of the garlic cloves. Heat a frying pan over a medium heat. Pour in a splash of olive oil, then add the chopped pumpkin, chopped garlic, onion, olives, and half the rosemary. Cook gently for 10 minutes or so until the pumpkin has softened.
- Meanwhile, place the whole garlic clove and the remaining rosemary in a pestle and mortar. Crumble in the dried chilli, add a good pinch of salt, pepper, nutmeg and cinnamon and bash until you have a paste. Add a little olive oil to loosen up the mixture and then rub the inside of the pumpkin with it.
- Season the cooked pumpkin mixture and stir in the rice, cranberries, pistachios and tangerine zest with a pinch each of nutmeg and cinnamon. Mix thoroughly then add the vegetable stock, bring to the boil and simmer for 3 minutes (no longer or the rice will end up overcooked later).
- Tear off a sheet of tin foil that’s large enough to wrap the pumpkin in a double layer and lay on top of a baking tray. Place the pumpkin on top and spoon the rice mixture into it, then place its lid back on. Rub the skin with a little olive oil, wrap it up in the foil and bake in the oven for about an hour. The pumpkin is ready when you can easily push a knife into it. Bring it to the table and open it up in front of everyone. Cut it into thick wedges and tuck in, leaving the skin. Serve with seasonal greens.
Of course there is pumpkin pickle which is a great way to take part in Pumpkin Rescue 2018
- 2 red onions, 3 cloves of garlic, 2.5 cm piece of ginger
- 500 g pumpkin 2 fresh green chillies vegetable oil 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds, 1 tablespoon ground coriander 1 tablespoon ground cumin, 1 tablespoon turmeric, 1 x 400 g tin of plum tomatoes
- 6 limes, cider vinegar, 250 g brown sugar
- Peel and finely slice the onions, then peel and grate the garlic and ginger. Peel, deseed and chop the pumpkin into 2cm chunks, then halve and deseed the chillies. Put aside for later.
- Drizzle 2 tablespoons of oil into a large saucepan over a high heat. When the oil is smoking hot, add mustard and fenugreek seeds, then stir in the onion, garlic and ginger.
- Reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring, until the mixture is dark brown and smelling fantastic. Add the ground spices, cook for 1 further minute, then add the tomatoes, breaking them up with the back of a wooden spoon. Bring to the boil and simmer gently for a few minutes.
- Finely grate the lime zest into the pan. Squeeze the lime juice into a measuring jug and top up to 500ml with cider vinegar. Pour into the pan, add the pumpkin and chillies, and bring back to the boil. Cook for a further 10 minutes, or until the pumpkin is just cooked.
- Lift the pumpkin out with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add 1 ½ teaspoons of sea salt and the sugar to the pan, and continue cooking until the liquid has reduced and thickened.
- Fold the pumpkin back into the pan, then spoon the pickle into sterilised jars. Seal the jars straight away and leave to cool. The pickle will be ready to eat in a few weeks time.
If you are shopping in Doncaster then the market has some wonderful stalls that will sell much of what you might be looking for in terms of ingredients. Perhaps make a recipe with a friend and share the cost. You will see Pumpkin Rescue events all over Doncaster, in the market and at the Frenchgate Centre to name two locations
Remember it’s so important to keep pumpkin flesh away from landfill and also reduce food waste. See why food waste is such a crime right here.
If you have a recipe you think other people should know about then contact us right here and we’ll publish it.