One of my favorite things about fall, besides stepping on crunchy leaves and the weather being nice, is going to the pumpkin patch. There’s so many pumpkins to choose from. There’s different sizes and colors, making it hard to select one. They’re all so unique that you just want to take them all home. Don’t feel overwhelmed, because it is possible to find “the one” with the help of these tips.
Step 1: Know the size
There’s just so many sizes. There’s round ones. Others are oblong. Some are small and some are large. Choose a pumpkin based on what you plan on using it for. If you want to make a warm pumpkin soup or a delicious pie, it’s better you go with a small one. The smaller pumpkins tend to have less water in them and are more flavorful. Some good pumpkins to use for cooking are: Autumn Gold, Cinderella and New England Pie Pumpkin.
If you want to carve your pumpkin into a jack-o-lantern, you’ll want to choose a bigger one and that sounds hollow. This will make carving better because it’ll give you more room to carve out your design. (Don’t forget to scoop out the inside before carving the pumpkin. You can use it to make other foods such as pumpkin butter. Yum!)
Step 2: Look at the color
For the most part pumpkins are orange, which is a good sign. In some cases, they’ll come out white (called Lumina) or a light orange. Sometimes it has some green spots, which can be bad. It means something is not right with it, so it’s not worth buying. Also, check to see that it does not have any holes, because that might mean it has insects, which isn’t good.
Step 3: Choose a firm one
Like choosing tomatoes or any fruit, you want to make sure the pumpkin is firm all around. If it feels soft or has some dents, the pumpkin might not last as long. A pumpkin with a hard skin means it’ll last longer because it is ripe. Also, make sure the stem doesn’t easily break. It helps determine the maturity of the pumpkin. If the stem is dark green or black, then you’re a couple steps closer to your perfect pumpkin.
Step 4: Find the right shape
If you plan on carving your pumpkin, make sure you choose one that is flat on the bottom, that way it can sit still. You don’t want one that won’t let you show off your artistic skills as a carver and can’t balance on the bottom.
If you want to go the extra mile and make your jack-o-lantern stand out, choose a wart looking pumpkin. They have bumps growing out of the shell giving it an interesting look. In the past couple of years, they have become a popular choice for carving and decorating.
Step 5: Be Creative
Once you’ve chosen the pumpkin of your dreams, decide how you plan on decorating it. Whether you plan on going for the original jack-o-lantern look or decide to carve out that cool design you found on Pinterest, the experience will be awesome. You can also paint your pumpkin if you decide you want to channel out your inner Picasso. Regardless of what you choose, have fun with it and may your fall season be spooktaculous!
How do you plan on carving your pumpkin this year? Tell me in the comments below!