| Environmental Columns

A zero-waste Halloween pumpkin

Did you know that the Internet has tons of recipes for using your entire pumpkin rather than abandoning it to the compost bin the day after Halloween?

You can grill the seeds and even spice them up. You can use the flesh to make soups or purees that can be added to all kinds of recipes. And foodies can use it to make cookies, muffins and other desserts.

Save yourself the hassle of cutting up the pumpkin by putting it in a bag and striking it against a hard surface (concrete or asphalt)—you’ll have a bag full of nice little pieces in no time! You can roast it in the oven without having to deal with peeling it or removing the strands. Once it’s cooked, the seeds are easy to harvest. Then, just place the pieces in a mixer—flesh, strands, skin and all—and voilà! A puree you can add to your favourite recipes. To preserve the flesh until you’re ready to use it, it’s best to carve your pumpkin at the last possible moment.

Did you know you can use pumpkin skin to make chips? Instead of traditional French fries and sweet potato fries, give pumpkin fries a try!

For the more adventurous, check out the recipes for making pumpkin face masks, or adding pumpkin to your potpourri.

Last but not least, how about holding on to a few of those seeds so you can grow your own pumpkins next Halloween?