What shall I do with my pumpkin after Halloween?
Ah, Halloween. A time for spooky movies, endless sweet treats and of course the traditional Jack O Lantern pumpkin. The bright orange vegetable, a cultivar of the squash family, is associated with the celebration which falls on the 31st October every year.
These pumpkins can be commonly bought in supermarkets or picked in pumpkin patches, which have seen a huge surge in popularity this year. They, of course, can be grown in your own plot or allotment too.
However, it was estimated last year that the UK throws away a shocking 8 million pumpkins every year.
This astonishing amount of pumpkin that is thrown away contributes to the UK’s growing food waste problem, with over half of all pumpkins purchased expected to end up in the bin rather than on the compost heap or using it to make other foods such as soups or pie.
These worrying figures, which were sourced from a report commissioned by Knorr, were published to show the amount of food waste created by the demand for pumpkins.
Looking for some inspiration for what to do with your pumpkin after Halloween? Look no further!
Create Soups, Pies or even Ale!
With thousands of recipes online for spicy soups or perfect pumpkin pie, there is no shortage of ideas. The flesh of the pumpkin can also be used in bread or even curries. Pumpkin ale, a popular beverage in the United States, is also gaining interest here in the UK.
If it is alcohol you want to mix your pumpkin with, the guts also make a great base for mulled wine or just a simple broth. The seeds are also a fantastic and healthy snack when roasted. If you really wanted to get the most from the pumpkin, the skin is also edible in small doses. The stalk of the pumpkin is the only part of a pumpkin that cannot be eaten – chuck that on the compost pile.
Use the shell for a natural pot or planter
Picture this. You have carved out all the delicious goodness from your pumpkin. The warm soup that you are making is cooking away in the distance but now you are left with the outside. What can you use it for? The possibilities are endless.
Switch up the plastics in the garden for a bright and compostable equivalent. From using it as a plant pot or a bird feeder, you can always find uses for the pumpkin. Pumpkin fruit is also edible to certain animals you might find in your gardens such as squirrels, rabbits, and even deer.
Make a face mask
Here at Nutley’s, we are all about how you can make your garden work for you and this includes home-made beauty. Pumpkins are packed with Vitamin E as well as antioxidants and make a great base for an all-natural face mask that helps reduce redness and tackle wrinkles. Just add milk and honey until you have a thick paste and apply generously to your face and neck.