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Reasons to eat pumpkin and 5 easy pumpkin recipes

We celebrate pumpkins as the face of Halloween, but they’re so much more. Pumpkin is another word for Squash, and it comes in a plethora of sizes and colors. Pumpkin originally grown in Central America and known as Calabaza can be watery, nutty, and sweet. There are more than a hundred types of squash that are known. They can be brown, they can be blue, they can be white and spotted too. Some are speckled with white streaks, and others entirely green, orange, and pale, even yellow. Pumpkins have been grown by indigenous people for thousands of years. The oldest domesticated pumpkin seeds were found in the Oaxaca Highlands of Mexico. At sometime in the 1800 it became popular to serve sweet pumpkin dishes and then pumpkin pie was born. Pumpkin has a nutrient rich profile. It is loaded with antioxidants, Vitamin A. Each squash is a little different but most contain other essential nutrients like Vitamin E, Vitamin B6, Folate, fiber, Vitamin C, Iron, potassium. This makes pumpkins a good source of

  • Magnesium
  • Calcium
  • Iron
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin B

For babies as well as adults this nutrient rich profile  of pumpkin is said to

  • Aid in the prevention of some types of cancer
  • Contribute to the formation of healthy bones, and teeth
  • helps regulate the immune system

So why aren’t we making more than pumpkin pie with squash? I’m really not sure. I’ve compiled some easy pumpkin, easy squash recipes to pack in the nutrients during these crazy covid times. Fist, How to cook a pumpkin:

  1. Cut the pumpkin in half
  2. Preheat oven on 350
  3. Scoop out the seeds and save for roasted seeds later (recipe for seeds)
  4. Place pumpkin halves on baking sheet cut side down
  5. Bake in the oven until Pumpkin is tender
  6. Remove from the oven
  7. Once cooled scoop the pumpkin from the rind into a bowl

Easy Recipes:

  1. Pumpkin Pancakes: 1-1/2 cups of  all purpose flour, 2 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp all spice, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 cup pureed pumpkin, 3 tlbs butter, 1 cup milk, 2 eggs (12 pancakes) (
  2. Pumpkin Soup – 2 Small sugar pumpkins, 3 cups chicken stock, 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream, 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg, 1/2 tsp ground sage, 1 1/2 tsp salt, 4 tbls sour cream ( )
  3. Pumpkin Muffins:  1 3/4 cups all purpose flour, 1 cup sugar, 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, 2 eggs, 1 15 ounce can pure pumpkin puree, 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.  ( )
  4. Savory Baked Pumpkin: 1sugar pumpkin(2 lb.whole, 1.5 lb. cleaned), 2tablespoons olive oil(or melted butter), 1teaspoonDiamond Crystal kosher salt, 1teaspoon garlic powder, 1teaspoon chili powder(or smoked paprika) ( )
  5. Pumpkin Chili ( Gluten & Dairy Free) 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil, 1 lb. ground beef, 1 green pepper, diced, 1 onion, diced, 2 Tbsp chili powder, 1 Tbsp cumin, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 tsp onion powder, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1 (15oz) can pumpkin puree (NOT pie filling), 1 (15oz) can pinto beans, not drained, 1 (15oz) can black beans, not drained, 1 (28oz) can diced tomatoes, not drained (I like fire-roasted) ( )
  6. Soft Pumpkin Cookies: 2 1/2 Cups all purpose flour, 1 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, 1/2 cup soften butter, 1 cup pumpkin puree, 1 egg, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1 cup powdered sugar. ( )
  7. Pumpkin Pie : Ingredients for Crust: 1/13 Cups of all purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 cup shortening, 3 1/2 tablespoons cold water, Filling Ingredients: 2 Cups mashed, cooked pumpkin, 1 (12 fluid ounce) can evaporated milk, 2 eggs, Beaten, 3/4 cup packed brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract ( )

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