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5 Unique Pumpkins to Delight Your Plate & Your Space

October 14, 2019

As leaves change and temperature falls, autumn brings with it a cornucopia of amazing produce. Of all the delightful flavors of this season, the pumpkin is a favorite among many. Dating back to 7000 B.C., its name originates from the Greek word "pepon," meaning "large melon." Today, it is grown all around the world for a variety of reasons, ranging from ornamental to agricultural. In fact, pumpkins are very versatile in their uses for cooking. From the fleshy shell, to the seeds, to even the flowers; most parts of the pumpkin are edible. Below are a few of our favorite unique varieties and how we prefer to use them.

 

Jarrahdale Pumpkin

The Jarrahdale pumpkin is native to Australia, and a cross between the Blue Hubbard and Cinderella pumpkin. It has a striking color, that dances between a blueish green and grey. Beyond its great looks, it is also a good cooking pumpkin. The interior orange flesh is dry and stingless, with a sweet, complex flavor.

 

Premier Pairing: Jarrahdale pumpkins are well suited for both sweet and savory preparation. They pair well with onion, parmesan cheese, rosemary, thyme, cinnamon, honey and dried cranberries. Its texture makes it perfect for a decadent souffle.

 

 

 Yellow Pumpkin

The Yellow pumpkin is the cousin of the White pumpkin. This early maturing lemon-yellow pumpkin is especially eye-catching when paired with white and orange pumpkins in displays. It has a nice ribbing and a strong, straight stem. As far as flavor, it is quite similar to a regular pie pumpkin.

 

Premier Pairing: Yellow pumpkin flavor holds up well to the complexity of Indian cuisine. It is perfect with rich turmeric and plays very well in curries.

 

Cinderella Pumpkin

Also know as Rouge Vif D'Etampe pumpkins, Cinderella pumpkins are believed to have originated in France, and were popular in the markets of Paris during the 1880's. In the spring of 1883, W. Atlee Burpee purchased the seeds and introduced the variety to the United States. Their skin is thick and dense. When cooked, Cinderella pumpkins are creamy and moist, with a mild and slightly sweet flavor.

 

Premier Pairing: Cinderella pumpkins have bright orange, creamy flesh that is perfect for baking.  Oven-roasted, they produce a pumpkin puree that is neither watery or bitter. These pumpkins work for sweet or savory dishes, and make a great pumpkin spice muffin, as well as a creamy pumpkin soup.

Red October Pumpkin

Red October is a vibrantly colored, red-orange fruit that is both edible and ornamental. They are a Hubbard type squash, which is very similar to Boston Marrow squash.  Internally, it has fine-grained flesh, with a sweet taste.

 

Premier Pairing:  The rich buttery flesh and hint of chestnut flavor makes a delicious base for any meal. Since the beautiful red skin also happens to be edible, it’s perfect for creating a pop of color at your holiday table.

 

Fairytale Pumpkin

Fairytale pumpkins, or Musquee de Provence, originated in Europe in the 19th century. Most well-known in the Provence region in the south of France, it was then introduced to the United States in 1899 and first sold by a seed store in Chicago. When cooked, Fairytale pumpkins are smooth, creamy, and tender, with a spicy scent and a mild, sweet flavor.

 

Premier Pairing: The Fairytale is just as amazing as the stories from which it gets its name. It is meaty, with spicy overtones. It is a perfect soup component when paired with cream, thyme and a blue cheese topper.

 

Of course, no pumpkin list is complete without Pie Pumpkins. Also known as Sugar pumpkins, these pumpkins have dry, sweet flesh with pronounced flavor and sweetness perfect for pies and other baked goods. Lastly, you can't have a fall display without a few carved Jack O’Lantern pumpkins. Whether your style is scary, stylish or enchanting, these pumpkins let your creativity shine – quite literally.

 

Written by Paul Finch

& Marianna Marchenko