"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude."~Maya Angelou

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Precious pumpkins

It's pumpkin time! Time to head out to your local farm or pumpkin venue of choice and collect some goodies!  My family traveled to a nearby farm this weekend to collect some pumpkins for pies as well as to carve in another week or so.  The woman who we dealt with was so nice and ended up giving each of my children more than one free pumpkin!  Going to get pumpkins is such a fun family tradition, along with taking those great pumpkin photos!  One fun fact that I have learned is that the more "lines" a pumpkin has the more seeds will be on the pumpkin, meaning it has been on the vine longer. Ripened pumpkins will also be darker in color. Of course pumpkins are part of the squash family, making them a super healthy food choice.  Pumpkins, with their rich orange color, are considered an anti-oxidant, full of beta carotene. Studies show that diets rich in beta carotene are less likely to develop certain cancers.
Of course, there are also the delicious seeds found withing the pumpkin.  make sure when you are scooping out those pumpkins this year, you toast at least one batch of seeds! Toasting seeds only takes about 10 minutes and is a great snack to share with your kids. It is an easy process and the kids can help. To make your seeds scrumptious, first clean the seeds by rinsing with cool water, then lay them on a baking sheet, so they don't overlap. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and bake for 7 to 10 minutes at 350, depending on how crispy you like them. Cooking times vary, but you will quickly find what works best for your taste buds!