Pumpkins are for far more than just carving into jack o’ lanterns on Halloween or holiday pumpkin pie! You can find tons of fantastic uses for pumpkins as a homesteader. Let’s look at a few of the different things you can do with pumpkins to make them even more useful.
With the seeds, you have a couple of options. First, you can collect the seeds and then use them the next time you plant pumpkins. It’s a way to keep the crop going so you have plenty of quality pumpkins each year.
Of course, you do not have to collect and use all the seeds for planting by any means. You can also roast the seeds. Adding a little bit of salt – sea salt if you have it – makes them a fantastic snack. You could also add a bit of honey when you roast them if you would like, but it is certainly not needed.
Puree the Pumpkins
You can puree the pumpkin by cutting it down the middle, removing the seeds and the pulp and then baking it for about 90 minutes in a baking dish along with a cup of water. Remove the flesh, and then puree it. You can then store the puree by freezing it and use for a wealth of different recipes including pumpkin pancakes, pies, and more.
This is an easy to make and tasty butter that can add something extra to your meals. Put two cups of the puree into a saucepan, and then add a cup of apple cider and a cup of brown sugar. You can add some spices, such as cinnamon, if you have it available as well. Boil the ingredients and then let it simmer for about 20 to 25 minutes or so. After it cools, you can store it in the fridge in glass jars. Use it just like you would any other type of sweet butter.
Like butternut squash, pumpkin can make a fantastic soup. You can add some ginger, apples, and other ingredients to the soup, which is perfect for the autumn. Even a single large pumpkin can make a nice big batch of soup that could last you and your family a couple of days.
Food for the Animals
Pumpkins can also make a nice treat for some of the animals that you have at your homestead. Goats and hogs, for example, tend to like pumpkin quite a bit, and you can try it out with some of your other animals as well. You will also find that wild animals, including deer, enjoy pumpkins.
This is just the start of some of the ways you can use pumpkins and some of the recipe ideas you can try. Plenty of other great options are available with pumpkins as well. It is a very versatile and tasty part of any homesteader’s life. If you have the room, you might want to start a pumpkin patch of your own.
If you liked this, you might also enjoy…