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Making The Most Of Your Pumpkin

(credit:  Phran Novelli)

(credit: Phran Novelli)

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By Phran Novelli

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Boo. If you’ve got a pumpkin for Halloween that you’re planning on eating, do you really want to carve it and leave it outside with a candle in it all night? I don’t.

But to begin with, whether and how you eat a pumpkin depends on what kind you’ve got. Smaller, sweeter ones – often called sugar pumpkins – are best for pies, puddings, muffins and such. Giant Jack-o-Lantern types tend to be more watery, stringy and less tasty – but you can add them to vegetable dishes or cream soups like carrot, potato or cauliflower, for extra nutrition.

Pumpkin’s loaded with Vitamin A, along with Vitamin C and calcium…plus fiber, that’s what the stringy stuff is.

To decorate your pumpkin for tonight without cutting it open, add a face with non-toxic paint; or by gluing or pinning on triangles of black construction paper – then shine a light on it to welcome trick-or-treaters. The paint or glue will come off when you peel the pumpkin to cook it, and instead of rotting on the front porch, your pumpkin decoration can do double duty as dinner or dessert one day soon – along with the seeds you’ll roast as a snack.