26 Oct Pumpkin Time
It’s that time of year that pumpkins invade supermarkets to be carved up into spooky lanterns, but this Halloween doesn’t let all that orange flesh go to waste! Often in our pursuit to have the most impressive lantern we may throw away the insides of our orange friends but Chef’s Complements say don’t! There is so much you can do with all that gunk you usually put in the bin, from toasting the seeds to making soup from the flesh, not to mention all the benefits of this squash.
We already mentioned the seeds, well these could be a great snack if you’re dieting. Being high in fibre the seeds make you feel fuller, in fact, the flesh of the pumpkin is also high in fibre and low in calories so you’re winning all round! Not only are these seeds a great companion to a diet but they could also boost your mood. Pumpkin seeds are rich in something called tryptophan which not only aids sleep but helps the body produce serotonin which contributes to improving your mood.
We’re not saying pumpkin consumption will mean you no longer need your specs but it does have high levels of vitamin A which promotes good vision. This vitamin is not only good for your eyes but also beneficial for the skin, teeth and bones and the benefits don’t end there! The list of benefits of both the pumpkins flesh and seeds seems endless with research showing they can help with blood pressure, cancer prevention and your heart.
We could go on but we’re sure by now we have convinced you not to neglect the flesh or seeds of your pumpkin this year! Instead, you could use our soup recipe below which also gives instructions on toasting the seeds.
Pumpkin is great sweet as well as savoury however if you’re looking for a health boost we advise you go for a savoury option such as our soup which is gluten and dairy free and can be adapted to be vegetarian or vegan. So without further or do let’s get into it!
First, start with the seeds, that’s the easy bit!
Smoked and Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin, seeds separated from the flesh of the pumpkin
- Spread the seeds out on a baking tray so that they are in a single layer.
- Drizzle with olive oil so that there is an even coverage and sprinkle with some smoked paprika. Use your hands to move the seeds around on the tray to ensure a good coverage.
- Place in the middle of the oven at a low temperature around gas mark 3 or 4 and leave for 30 minutes. Adjust the time and temperature depending on your oven.
- When ready remove from oven and season with salt.
- Allow a short time for the seeds to cool so you don’t burn your mouth and then enjoy!
That was super easy wasn’t it and our soup recipe is also really straightforward!
1kg of pumpkin diced
1oz butter/vegan butter or non-dairy margarine
1 med-size onion chopped finely
1 pint chicken stock/vegetable stock
½ pink milk/coconut milk
1 tablespoon lemon juice
A pinch of sugar
½ teaspoon freshly grated or ground nutmeg or mace
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Cut up pumpkin and boil in small amount of water until tender.
- Melt butter/vegan alternative, sauté onions and add to pumpkin and water.
- Add the rest of the ingredients in the following order; chicken/vegetable stock, milk/coconut milk, pumpkin pulp, lemon juice, sugar and nutmeg or mace.
- Cover and simmer for 20 mins.
Season and serve.