Post by Jalia Begum
Note: The author's views are entirely his or her own and may not reflect the views of RetoxMagazine.com
At Lendt’s pumpkin patch in Wyoming (US), some of the pumpkins are cut up and used as fertiliser for the fields, and the sweeter ones are given away to be used for seeds and pie.
Pumpkins are often given to the local pig farmers to be used as feed for pigs.
Pinehaven Farms in Wyoming put their extra pumpkins out in the cow pastures and let the cows chomp on them. Apparently cows like the pumpkins as they are gone within a week.
Not everyone has the luxury to live in the country and enjoy farm lands. In fact, most of us, city-zens , have only seen farm animals in advertisements or vacuum packed at a local supermarket. But I hear that deer and squirrels also like pumpkins, and squirrels we have plenty of in London.
Personally, I am not too keen to make food out of a pumpkin that has been carved out and sat out there for a day, and you should be careful too as it could be unsafe. But if you have a whole pumpkin left lying low in your kitchen (probably because you were tricked into a ‘buy 2 get 5 free’ offer by a supermarket), make pumpkin puree which you can store in your freezer and use it in your cooking for a long time ahead. If it’s frozen it will last for months!
To make pumpkin puree is simple; cut your pumpkin in half, scoop out the guts, place it cut side down onto a baking tray and bake for around 90mins until the flesh is nice and tender, wait for it to cool down, scoop out the middle, and blend it in a food processor.
If ingesting pumpkin is not a thing for your menu, then put it on your face. Pumpkins are rich in zinc and vitamins A, C and E, which makes pumpkin purée healthy for your body if you eat it and healthy to apply to the skin, making pumpkin ideal for a facial mask.
My favourite DIY recipe for the pumpkin facemask involves mixing together half a cup of pureed pumpkin (see point 5), 1 tablespoon of plain yoghurt, 1 tablespoon of honey, a pinch of almonds and a drop of olive oil. Stir your mixture, slap in onto your face, keep it on for 10 mins, wipe if off, job done! And it smells nice…
If you have a garden and you like flowers and plants, you can always make a planter out of your pumpkin, giving your spot of green a natural and festive look for a few more days. This is simple, go and check out your local nursery, pick up a plant you like with some potting soil, plant your plant into your carved-faced pumpkin (pack about half of your pumpkin with soil), and then a few days later you can plant the whole thing into your garden plot or back yard and let the pumpkin decompose within the soil enriching the soil.
Save the seeds to plant the following year, if that’s your thing and your living arrangement permits. Grow your own pumpkins
Roast the seeds and eat them.
Trash your pumpkin, the seeds, the flesh, the works...