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my 3 favourite pumpkin recipes to try this week

31th October 2023
To celebrate Halloween, here are three Pumpkin recipes to put leftovers to good use...

As I mentioned in my opening to chapter ten at the start of the month, according to research by Hubbub, approximately 22.2 million pumpkins go to waste each year. For that reason, this Halloween, I thought I’d share my 3 favourite pumpkin recipes so that together, we can put our pumpkins to good use! 

Whether your pumpkins are currently carved masterpieces ready and waiting to spook trick or treaters when night falls or, like mine, sat untouched in all of their wonky, homegrown glory, I hope that you enjoy both making and devouring these pumpkin recipes in the next few days…

1. Pumpkin, Pecan and Cinnamon Wedges by @5oclockapron (feeds 4)

Recipe:

  • 500g pumpkin sliced into thin chunks
  • Pinch of salt
  • 50g Pecan Nuts
  • 25g Pumpkin Seeds
  • 25g Brown Sugar to roast
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp sunflower, rapeseed or olive oil
  • 300 g extra thick Greek yoghurt
  • 2 tbsp Maple syrup (use an extra 1 tbsp soft brown sugar if you don’t have maple syrup)

Method:

Step one – Preheat your air fryer to 190 C (or preheat oven to 200 degrees/ 180 degrees fan)

Step two – In a food processor or pestle and mortar, crush the pecans, pumpkin seeds, brown sugar and ground cinnamon until it represents a course dust

Step three – Toss the pumpkin in the oil and add a tiny pinch of salt and place in the airfryer/ on a baking tray in the oven 

Step four – Cook for approximately 14-18 minutes, flipping the slices halfway through. Cook until they’re tender and have some good colour at the edges

Step five – Add an extra tbsp of sugar to the pumpkin slices and return to cook for 2-3 minutes until caramelised

Step six – To serve, drench the cooked pumpkin in the pecan dust and serve with the Greek yoghurt drizzled with the maple syrup. (If you don’t have maple syrup, add an extra tbsp of sugar to the pecan dust!)

2. Pumpkin, Potato and Cream Cheese Soup (feeds 6-8)

This recipe is based on this BBC Good Food recipe but I’ve adapted it slightly because there was no double cream in the fridge. I used a small tub of Original Philadelphia instead – my go-to secret ingredient for so many hearty soups at this time of year!

Ingredients:

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 25g/1oz unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium pumpkin (prepared weight about 850g/1lb 14oz) deseeded and roughly chopped
  • 1 medium-sized floury potato, such as Maris Piper, roughly chopped
  • 1 litre/1¾ pint vegetable or chicken stock, a little extra may be needed
  • Small tub of cream cheese (I used Original Philadelphia)
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method:

Step one – Put the onion, carrots, garlic bay leaf, butter and olive oil into a large pan. Cook over a low–medium heat for about 10 minutes until the vegetables are tender but not coloured.

Step two – Add the pumpkin and potato, mix to combine and cook for a further 2–3 minutes. Pour in the stock, season well and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook for a further 40 minutes until the pumpkin is really tender.

Step three – Pick out the bay leaf and blend the soup until smooth (I use the thermomix but a hand blender works well too)

Step four – Add the cream cheese and a little more stock if the soup is on the thick side. Season to suit your tastebuds!

Step five – Ladle the soup into bowls and serve with a swirl of cream cheese. Option to top with toasted pumpkin seeds (see method in additional pumpkin ideas below)

3. Creamy Pumpkin Pasta (feeds 4)

If you know me, you know that pasta is my ultimate comfort food. With that in mind, this recipe by Esther Clark on BBC Good Food is an instant win in the Millen-Gordon household. 

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 500g pumpkin , peeled and cut into roughly 3cm cubes
  • 50-100ml whole milk
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 2 tbsp mascarpone
  • 350g pasta of choice
  • 40g grated parmesan , plus extra to serve

Method:

Step one – Heat the oil in a large pan over a low-medium heat and fry the onion with a pinch of salt for 10-15 mins until softened. Add the garlic and fry for 1 min more. Remove from the heat and leave to cool slightly.

Step two – In a separate pan, cook the pumpkin in boiling salted water for 10 minutes (or until tender when pierced with a knife.) Drain and tip into a blender (or use a hand blender). Blitz with the onions and milk until completely smooth (add the milk gradually until the mixture resembles that of a smooth paste). Tip into a large frying pan with the tomato purée and mascarpone, and bring to a simmer over a low heat.

Step three – Cook the pasta in a large pan of boiling, salted water following pack instructions. Drain, reserving a cupful of the cooking water. Toss the pasta with the pumpkin sauce, parmesan and 50-100ml of the reserved water to loosen. Season and scatter with extra parmesan.

A few more pumpkin recipe ideas to reduce waste:

  1. Freeze the scooped out pumpkin flesh and add it to vegetable soups for additional flavour and nutrients in the coming weeks and months
  2. Rinse the leftover pumpkin seeds, pat dry, then drizzle with oil and sprinkle with salt and/or your favourite spices. Roast in a fan oven at 200 degrees for 15 minutes or until golden and toasted.  They crunch up as they cool so serve at room temperature for a healthy, tasty snack!

Looking for some cosy Autumnal outfit ideas instead?

Take a look at my favourites from H&M here…

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  • Amy Louise
    1st November 2023 at 11:23 pm

    Hello lovely one!!!
    We might be pulling out our one piece and hitting the beach, but that has never ment that you cannot enjoy a pumpkin dish!!
    My favourite is pumpkin with gnocchi and sage in burnt butter. Enjoy your white Christmas while we, in Australia, frizzle and fry.
    Amy XOXO

    • Lydia
      2nd November 2023 at 9:39 am

      That sounds delicious Amy! Have fun at the beach and enjoy your summer! x

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