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Post Halloween Pumpkins Still Have Plenty Of Uses

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Post Halloween Pumpkins Still Have Plenty Of Uses

Halloween is over but odds are there are still plenty of pumpkins sitting around.

Putnam County UT-Ag Extension Director Michelle Parrott said there are uses for carved and un-carved pumpkins we decorated with. Parrott said the first priority would be getting use out of our jack-o-lanterns.

Parrott said composting is a smart choice, but get rid of all those seeds first.

“If you do have a composting pile there at your house you definitely would not want to throw the whole pumpkin into that, with the seeds,” Parrott said. “Thinking about, you’re going to have 10 or 20 pumpkins next year because those seeds might start to germinate and then you would be growing pumpkins.”

Parrott said unused pumpkins need a spot check first, making sure there are no soft spots. She said if they pass that test, the pumpkin meat can be used for baking breads, muffins and other holiday treats.

“Cut it, depending on the size you could half it or quarter it,” Parrott said. “Clean out the insides, a great time to get those seeds out. Take that stringy pulp out and then heat your oven around 350 degrees, get a large baking dish or cookie sheet and put that carved side down.”

Parrott said this process usually takes roughly an hour in the oven. She said if you can push a fork or knife into the meat of the pumpkin, it’s done.

Parrott said the seeds have use too, making a nice snack once roasted until golden brown. She said prep them by rinsing under cold water, patting them dry.

“Get a bowl and toss those seeds in just a table spoon of olive oil and a little bit of salt to taste, depending on your own flavoring,” Parrott said. “Then preheat your oven to 350 degrees and place those seeds on a lightly greased cookie sheet and roast those for 20 or 30 minutes.”

Parrott said there is a difference between pie pumpkins and jack-o-lantern pumpkins but both can be used. She said pie pumpkins have more meat, a sweeter taste and hold less water.


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