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TEXARKANA, Ark. –
Pumpkins can be spotted everywhere, propped up with scarecrows, signs, mums, and bales
of straw. But what are you to do with those pumpkins once Halloween is over?
Pumpkins are a nutritional powerhouse and can actually be considered a “health food.”
They are low in calories, fat, and sodium, yet high in fiber. They are good sources
of Vitamins A, B, C, potassium, protein, and iron. As an added benefit, the pumpkin
seeds, which provide protein and iron, make a great snack or lunch box item when roasted.
It’s the bright orange color that is dead giveaway that it is loaded with vitamin
A which is essential for good vision, healthy skin, and helping ensure a strong immune
system. A few more great healthy attributes of pumpkins:
Pumpkins are actually a fruit, but many people use it as a vegetable. They are a member
of the gourd family, which includes squash, cucumbers, gherkins, and melons. They
can be substituted for winter squash or sweet potato, both high in vitamin A, in many
recipes and are used to make soups, pies and breads.
When searching for your pumpkin, select one that is small in size. Small, immature
pumpkins provide the most flavorful dishes. Smaller pumpkins are tender and less stringy
than the larger variety.
Your pumpkin should have a stem of 1 to 2 inches. If the stem is cut too low, the
pumpkin will decay quickly or may be decaying at the time of purchase. Avoid those
with blemishes and soft spots as well.
To decide what size of pumpkin you should purchase to make a pie later, you will need
one pound of raw, untrimmed pumpkin for one cup of finished pumpkin puree. In other
words, an eight pound pumpkin will yield eight cups of puree.
Pumpkin is a fall favorite for more than just decorating. Experiment with different
recipes containing pumpkin. Click here for a free copy of the Dollar Stretcher newsletter,
Making Your Halloween SPOOKTACULAR, contact the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture in the Miller
County Courthouse, call 870-779-3609, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
I have shared this recipe for Pumpkin Praline Cake before; it is from my mother and
worth sharing again. Anyone who tastes it will think it took hours to prepare, but
is easy with the use of a cake mix.
By Carla Haley-Hadley County Extension Agent - FCSThe Cooperative Extension ServiceU of A System Division of Agriculture
Media Contact: Carla Haley-Hadley County Extension Agent - FCSU of A Division of AgricultureCooperative Extension Service400 Laurel Street, Suite 215 Texarkana AR 71854 (870) 779-3609 email@example.com
The Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative
action institution. If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate or need
materials in another format, please contact your County Extension office (or other
appropriate office) as soon as possible. Dial 711 for Arkansas Relay. The Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to all eligible persons
regardless of race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin,
religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any
other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.