Monday, 15 October 2012

A Pumpkin is not just for Halloween.

Monday 15th October 2012
My heart lifted the other day when one of my pupils, on the subject of pumpkins, started talking about pumpkin soup and pumpkin pie. Could it be that the British public are finally realising that you can actually eat pumpkins as well as carve them into ghoulish faces?

Unfortunately, when I recanted this tale to Sue, she pointed out that the child's reaction had probably come straight from Homer Simpson!

The sweetcorn which towered over my various squashes, courgettes and pumpkins is now long picked, but I have been leaving the pumpkins etc to soak up every last gram of British sunshine. Today I decided to brave entering the jungle of gigantic leaves and meandering stems, with the intention of removing said leaves so that the crop could have a last few days in the open, still attached to its stems just in case it could wheedle out any extra goodness from the roots.

As seems to always happen, it proved to be a bigger job than I was expecting. It was like untangling spaghetti and a fair few times I cut through the wrong stem - hence the pile of pumpkins and squashes on the goat barrow ready to spend a few days ripening in the polytunnel.

By the end, I was fairly impressed with my crop, especially considering that the same patch has already yielded a considerable quantity of courgettes.

I was also left with about 8 barow loads of greenery, which the pigs turn their noses up at, although they did tuck into all the old corn stems with zeal. So the compost heaps got some good roughage added.

By this evening, Sue was already boiling up a vat full of spiced pumpkin and apple jam. It smelt absolutely delicious, very Christmassy.

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