It’s finally pumpkin season and there are many reason to celebrate. Did you know, that the name pumpkin comes from the Greek word ‘pepon’, meaning ‘large melon’? And, according to Guinness World Records, the record for the heaviest pumpkin was set in 2010 with a pumpkin that weighed 2,323 pounds (1,054 kilograms)!
Pumpkins, pack powerful health options- like keeping your vision, heart and inflammation in check. Rich in minerals and vital antioxidants and vitamins, the seeds are also concentrated sources of protein, minerals and health-benefiting vitamins.
Use any leftover grains, beans and vegetables that you have. Vary your own spice mixture, Italian, Middle Eastern, Asian, experiment and have fun!
VEGAN PLANT BASED NUTTY FRUITY PUMPKIN
GF, DF, EF
VEGAN AND VEGETARIAN
1 Japanaese (Kabocha) pumpkin – about 1 – 1½ kg
1-2 tablespoons olive or coconut oil
3 cloves peeled garlic
1 tablespoon chopped ginger or to taste
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cardamom or coriander
Pinch of chilli (optional)
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup finely chopped celery
½ cup chopped carrots and/or beetroot
½ cup cooked black, white beans, aduki or chickpeas
½ cup chopped almonds or walnuts
1-cup leftover cooked rice, quinoa or buckwheat
½ cup chopped dates or un sulphured apricots (grated apple is good too)
1 tablespoon grated rind of lemon, lime or orange
Sea or Himalayan salt to taste
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1. Preheat the oven to 230 C/450 F. Bake the pumpkin whole for 15 minutes then cut the lid off and scoop out the seeds and some of the flesh. Alternatively, cut the lid off the pumpkin, set the lid aside, and scoop out the seeds and the flesh.
2. Chop any of the pumpkin flesh that you have scooped out. Reserve the pumpkin seeds, which you can bake and have as a snack sprinkled with tamari soy sauce when hot.
3. Heat frying pan, add the garlic and sauté 1-2 minutes then add the ginger and repeat. Add the spices and sauté another minute. Add the onions and cook till transparent. (Add more oil if too dry as the spices eat it up!)
4. Then add the rest of the vegetables, cover and simmer 5 minutes.
5. Add the beans, nuts, rice, dried fruit and rind. Mix thoroughly, season to taste.
6. Place the pumpkin in a baking dish, spoon the mixture into it, then place the lid back on.
7. Rub the skin with olive or coconut oil and bake 20-30 minutes or until the pumpkin is soft to the touch.
8. Remove the lid and sprinkle the top with ground almonds before serving.
9. Cut into thick wedges, serve with some sauerkraut and roasted tamari pumpkin seeds. And don’t forget you can enjoy every bit; even the skin!
Join us and take on the Meatless Monday Challenge: Once a week cut the meat! You’ll be amazed at the difference it will make to your health (and your wallet).