Making the most out of your pumpkin
Pumpkins aren’t just for carving a scary face in! They are Rich in vital vitamins and minerals. Just 80g of pumpkin count as 1 of your 5 a day, and they are truly delicious!
Here are 10 ways to use up your Halloween leftovers from Tesco.
Pumpkin soup with rosemary and bacon
1kg (2lb) pumpkin or 1 large butternut squash, unpeeled
1 onion, cut into wedges
3 cloves garlic, skin on
3 sprigs rosemary
oil for drizzling
125g (4oz) pancetta or smoked bacon pieces
400ml (14fl oz) chicken or vegetable stock
250ml (8fl oz) milk
- Heat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Cut the pumpkin or squash into 3cm slices; remove seeds, saving a few for the garnish. Put pumpkin on a baking tray with the onion wedges, garlic and rosemary, and drizzle with oil.
- Bake for 20 minutes, then add the pancetta (keep separate in one corner of the baking tray). Bake for a further 20 minutes until the pumpkin is soft inside and brown around the edges.
- Reserve the pancetta and rosemary. Remove the pumpkin skin, then place flesh in a food processor along with the onions and garlic paste squeezed from each clove. Add the stock and milk. Blend until smooth, adding extra milk if needed. Place in a pan, season and heat to taste, and serve with pancetta, pumpkin seeds and rosemary.
Roasted pumpkin wedges with feta and thyme
1kg (2lb) pumpkin, cut into wedges
2 tbsp olive oil
pinch chilli flakes
1 garlic bulb
4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves picked
150g (5oz) fresh feta, crumbled
- Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Arrange the pumpkin in a large, shallow baking dish. Drizzle with the olive oil and scatter over the chilli flakes. Break the garlic bulb into cloves and nestle them, unpeeled, around the pumpkin. Season well and scatter over the thyme leaves.
- Roast for 25-30 minutes, or until tender and lightly charred. Add the feta for the last 5 minutes of cooking.
50ml olive oil
5 large vine tomatoes, halved
1/2 pumpkin, peeled, de-seeded and diced
50g cheddar, finely grated
small handful of thyme leaves
- Preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Arrange the tomato halves face-side up in an oval roasting dish so that there are a few gaps between them where the pumpkin will go. Dot the pumpkin into these spaces so that everything is neatly packed into the dish.
- Drizzle with olive oil and season well, then sprinkle the thyme leaves on top. Cover the dish with foil then bake for 30-40 minutes until the pumpkin is soft.
- Remove from the oven, discard the foil and sprinkle the cheese on top. Return to the oven for 10-15 minutes until the cheese has melted.
- Remove and allow to stand for a few minutes before serving.
400g leftover pumpkin or butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 2.5cm cubes
120g ricotta, drained
50g finely grated Parmesan, plus extra to serve
1 egg, lightly beaten
200g plain flour, plus extra to dust
60g salted butter
1 tsp oil
20 sage leaves
- Steam the pumpkin in a colander set over a pan of simmering water or a steamer pan for 20 mins, or until very soft and tender.
- Using a potato masher, mash the steamed pumpkin to a smooth purée. Line a surface with kitchen paper and spread the pumpkin purée over before patting dry to ensure you remove as much moisture as possible.
- In a bowl or food processor, mix the pumpkin purée, ricotta, grated Parmesan, the egg, ¼ tsp salt and some black pepper. Stir well to combine, then add the flour and use a wooden spoon to mix to a soft dough, taking care not to ‘overmix’.
- Turn out the dough onto a floured surface and cut into 4. Roll each piece into a 1.5cm wide log. Cut the log into 2cm pieces using a floured knife. Gently mark each gnocchi with the back of a floured fork to achieve the traditional ridges.
- Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Tip in half the gnocchi and cook for 1-2 mins, until they rise to the surface. Remove with a slotted spoon and cook the remaining gnocchi.
- Heat 15g butter and the oil in a large frying pan. Add half the gnocchi and fry for 2 mins or until starting to brown. Add 15g more butter and, once melted, add the sage leaves. Fry for 1-2 mins, until the gnocchi are golden all over and the sage is crispy. Repeat with the remaining butter, gnocchi and sage leaves.
- Divide between serving plates. Season with a twist of black pepper and some shavings of Parmesan.
Tip: If the dough is too sticky to handle when rolling, add a little more flour, trying to add as little as possible.
Uncooked gnocchi will keep for up to 2 days in the fridge if dusted in flour to prevent them sticking.
2kg (4Ib) pumpkin
2 tbsp olive oil
125g (4oz) bulgur wheat, rinsed
￼￼300ml hot vegetable stock
1 onion, roughly chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
small bunch flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
small handful chives, roughly chopped
100g pack firm goat’s cheese, cut into 1cm pieces
- Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Slice the top quarter off the pumpkin and scoop out the seeds and discard. Put the pumpkin on a baking tray and brush the inside with 1 tbsp olive oil. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, put the bulgur wheat in a heatproof bowl and cover with the hot vegetable stock. Cover and set aside for 20 minutes; drain well. Heat the remaining 1 tbsp olive oil in a small frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the onion and fry for 1 minute before adding the garlic. Cook for 2-3 minutes, until softened.
- Stir the onion mixture, parsley and most of the chives and goat’s cheese into the bulgur wheat; season well.
- Remove the pumpkin from the oven. Reduce the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C. Spoon the mixture into the pumpkin and top with the remaining cheese. Return to the oven for a further 30 minutes, or until golden. Serve scattered with the remaining chives.
Onion rice with pumpkin and chestnuts
1 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, finely sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp chilli flakes
1 tsp cumin seeds
350g pumpkin or butternut squash, seeded and cut into 2.5cm cubes
100g roasted chestnuts, roughly chopped
375g microwave long grain rice
2 tbsp crème fraîche
small bunch parsley, chopped
bunch chives, chopped
- Heat the oil and half the butter in a large pan over a low heat on the hob. Add the onion and cook for 10 mins, until softened. Increase the heat to medium and stir in the garlic, chilli and cumin. Fry for 1-2 mins, until fragrant, then add the pumpkin or squash.
- Season well and fry for 7 mins, or until starting to soften. Add the chestnuts and rice along with the remaining butter and continue cooking for a further 8 mins, stirring occasionally. Season to taste, then stir in the crème fraîche, parsley and chives.
Spicy harissa and vegetable bake
300g pumpkin, peeled, seeded and chopped into small chunks
250g parsnips, scrubbed and chopped into small chunks
250g beetroots, scrubbed and chopped into small chunks
1-2 tbsp harissa, to taste
3 ½ tbsp olive oil
1 red pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1½ tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp smoked paprika
2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
400g tin cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
handful chopped parsley
100g ciabatta, torn
½ lemon, zested
- Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Put the pumpkin (or squash), parsnip and beetroot in a shallow roasting tray, add the harissa and 1 tbsp oil, and stir to coat. Season with salt, then roast for 40 mins, adding the red pepper after 15 mins.
- Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp oil in a frying pan over a medium-low heat, add the onion and cook for 5 mins, or until softened. Stir in the garlic and spices and cook for another 2 mins. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for 20 mins, stirring occasionally. Stir through the cannellini beans and set aside.
- Stir the roasted vegetables into the tomato sauce with 200ml water and half the chopped parsley. Spoon into a 25cm pie dish.
- In a food processor, pulse the bread very briefly into chunks. Mix with the remaining parsley, the remaining 11⁄2 tbsp oil and lemon zest. Sprinkle evenly over the top. Bake in the oven for 30 mins, or until piping hot.
Spiced pumpkin seeds
80g raw pumpkin seeds, leftover from a cooking pumpkin
4 tsp olive oil
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
pinch of sea salt
- Preheat the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C. Scoop out 80g of raw pumpkin seeds from the flesh. Remove any stringy bits from the seeds and rinse well with cold water. Pat dry with kitchen paper, removing as much moisture as possible.
- Toss the seeds in a bowl with the oil, cumin, paprika and salt until evenly coated. Spread out on a baking tray and roast for 10 mins. Allow to cool before serving.
Pumpkin and pecan pie
650g pumpkin (or butternut squash), peeled, seeded and diced
butter, for greasing
1 x 375g pack ready-rolled light shortcrust pastry
100ml maple syrup
1 tsp ground mixed spice
1 x 170g tin reduced-fat evaporated milk
3 large eggs, beaten
100g pecan nuts
icing sugar, for dusting (optional)
- Cook the pumpkin or squash for 12-15 mins in a pan of boiling water, until tender. Drain and set aside to cool completely. Preheat the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C.
- Grease a 20cm loose-bottomed tart tin, line with the pastry and trim. Line with nonstick baking paper and fill with baking beans. Bake for 15 mins, then remove the paper and beans. Bake for a further 10 mins.
- Blitz the cooled pumpkin in a food processor, until smooth. Add 50ml maple syrup, the mixed spice, evaporated milk and eggs, and blitz again. Pour the mix into the tart case, making sure a small gap is left at the top of the pastry. You may not need all the filling. Bake the pie for 40 mins, or until the filling is just firm.
- In a bowl, mix most of the remaining maple syrup with the pecans. Stir to coat. Arrange on the top of the pie, then drizzle over the rest of the syrup. Return to the oven for 20-25 mins, until the pecans are toasted. Leave to cool in the tin, then chill for 2 hrs. Remove from the tin and dust with icing sugar, if you like.
Spiced pumpkin toffee apple cake
200g dark brown soft sugar
150ml groundnut oil
100g desiccated coconut
½ tsp mixed spice
200g wholemeal self-raising flour
375g pumpkin or butternut squash, peeled and grated
For the toffee apples
3 small apples
200g caster sugar
½ tsp white wine vinegar
2 tbsp golden syrup
2 tbsp double cream
50g dried apricots, finely chopped
150g shelled pistachios, finely chopped
3 chocolate sticks, such as Matchmakers
For the icing
275g unsalted butter, softened
300g icing sugar, sifted
75g cocoa powder, sifted
For the salted caramel
397g tin condensed milk caramel
½ tsp sea salt flakes
65g dark chocolate
For the spun sugar (optional)
50g caster sugar
- Preheat the oven to gas 5, 190°C, fan 170°C. Grease the base and sides of 2 x 19cm round tins, then line with nonstick baking paper.
- To make the cake, whisk together the eggs and sugar in a large bowl. Gradually pour in the oil, whisking as you go. Fold in the remaining cake ingredients, then divide between the tins. Bake for 30-35 mins, until risen and springy. Cool for 2 mins before removing from the tin, then transfer to a rack and leave to cool completely.
- Meanwhile, make the toffee apples. Wash the apples in hot water to remove the waxy coating, then put on a sheet of nonstick baking paper and spear each with a skewer. Heat the sugar in a small pan with 50ml water until dissolved. Stir in the vinegar and golden syrup and bring to the boil. Cook for 10-12 mins, until a drop sets when drizzled into a glass of cold water. Stir in the cream and cook for 1-2 mins, then remove from the heat.
- Toss the apricots and 50g pistachios together on a plate. Swirl each apple in the toffee to coat, then dip into the pistachio and apricot mixture. Transfer to the baking paper to set. Remove the skewers and replace with the chocolate sticks, to give each apple a ‘stalk’ (see top tip).
- To make the icing, beat 250g of the softened butter together with the icing sugar and cocoa powder. For the salted caramel, put the remaining butter in a small pan with the condensed milk caramel and heat together, stirring, until you have a smooth sauce. Remove from the heat, stir in the salt and leave to cool while you ice the cake.
- Put one half of the cake on a plate and spread 2-3 tbsp of the icing over the top. Sprinkle with 50g pistachios. Top with the other sponge, then spread the remaining butter icing over the top and sides of the cake.
- Pour over half of the salted caramel and spread to the edges so it runs down the sides. Chop 15g of the dark chocolate and stir into the remaining caramel until melted; pour over the cake and allow to run down the sides, creating a distinct second layer.
- Arrange the toffee apples carefully on the top of the cake, stalks pointing upwards, and sprinkle with the remaining pistachios. Melt the remaining chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water and drizzle over the apples and cake.
- If decorating with spun sugar, melt the sugar in a small pan, without stirring, over a medium heat. Remove from the heat when the sugar turns golden brown and leave to cool a little. Then hold the pan above the cake and, using a fork, flick the caramel over the cake and toffee apples.