Pumpkin is a very good source of vitamins A and C, potassium and fiber.
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- Pumpkins are a type of winter squash available in October and November.
- Pumpkins grown for cooking are called “pie pumpkins” and usually weigh from 2 to 10 pounds. Their flesh makes a smooth and flavorful puree.
- Choose pie pumpkins that are firm and heavy for their size, without cracks or soft spots.
- Each pound of uncut pumpkin will provide 1 to 1½ cups of cooked puree.
- Seeds can be dried and saved for growing pumpkins next year.
Pumpkins grown for carving are often large and have a thinner wall of flesh that can be cooked but the texture and flavor are not pleasant.
- Canned pumpkin is convenient and available year round.
- Unopened canned pumpkin is safe to eat for up to 5 years after the ‘use by’ or ‘best by’ date if the can has no dents, rust or swelling.
- Once opened, canned pumpkin can be kept in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.
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- Store whole pumpkins in a cool, dark and dry place for up to 3 months.
- Scrub pumpkins under running water before cutting or cooking. Once cut, wrap tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- Freeze cooked or unused canned pumpkin to use later. Package in airtight containers and use within 1 year.
- Roast the seeds from any type of pumpkin.
When kids help make healthy food, they are more likely to try it. Show kids how to:
- gather ingredients and tools for cooking.
- measure and mix ingredients.
- drop cookies on greased baking sheet and flatten before baking.