Happy Halloween everyone! Here’s a smashing pumpkin dish to celebrate the occasion! I love this recipe because the mini pumpkins are such a fall treat! Doesn’t everything just taste better when it’s mini? Finally we can say, “I’m so hungry I could eat a whole pumpkin!” and mean it!
Actually, I’ll be completely honest in saying that I didnt know these mini jack-be-little pumpkins were edible! I thought they were strictly a decorative piece, not for eating. At home we used to always have gourds and jack-be-little pumpkins scattered around the house, and never did we cook with them. Just wait for the next time I serve this dish at a family gathering….that’ll give us pumpking to talk about! 😉
Yep, it turns out you can eat these mini-pumkins! And oh my gourd they’re delicious. (Okay I’ll stop it with the bad puns now). Of course it only took me 28 years and moving to France to realize this tid-bit of information. It wasn’t until I saw them being sold at the market that it clicked in you could cook with them. What’s more is that you can eat the skin too, just like the red kuri squash (potimarron) that I’ve come accustomed to buying for soups and puree-ing for pumpkin cakes. Plus, you can also save the pumpkin seeds inside these little pumpkins and roast them up, meaning there is absolutely no food waste that goes into eating this delicious dinner dish (apart from the stem – best to leave that to the garbage to feast on).
I’ve stuffed these mini-pumpkins with a 5-grain medley by GoGo Quinoa. No, this isn’t a promotion for the brand, I just happened to have it in my pantry and liked the perfect melange of red quinoa, amaranth, brown rice, split peas, and wild rice. If you want to use it too I think they sell it at Costco and most Canadian grocers. My parents-in-law had brought it to France thinking I’d like the medley, and of course I did. But, you can always stuff these pumpkins using wild rice, brown rice, or whatever other grain you fancy. This is what I would have done if I didn’t have the GoGo Quinoa medley.
I’ve then made the medley even tastier cooking it in vegetable broth, and mixing in balsamic and lime, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, dried cranberries and kale. The end result is TO DIE FOR. It tastes so hearty and warm for the cooling fall weather, and pairs beautifully with the pumpkin. And, when we’ve got little kiddies prepping for a cold night of trick-or-treating we’ve got to make sure they have a warm and full belly to conquer the night! And for us adults, these stuffed pumpkins along side a glass of red wine (a.k.a. candy for adults) is a perfect way to get in the Halloween spirit.
So ring in the spook with this delicious mini stuffed pumpkins…It’s smashing.
Happy Halloween Everyone!
Stuffed Mini-Pumpkins with Wild Rice and Kale
- 6 mini pumpkins jack-be-little pumpkins
- 2 tbsp neutral oil (ex. avocado oil)
- 1 1/2 cups wild rice
- 3 cups vegetable broth or water
- 1 tbsp balsamic
- 2 tbsp lime juiced
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
- 1/3 cup walnuts chopped
- 1 cup kale chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 400F/200C. Cut the tops off each pumpkin to create a lid. And scoop out the seeds inside. Then paint each pumpkin with olive oil. Place both the base and lid of the pumpkins on a baking tray and bake for 20-30 minutes, or until cooked and golden.
- In a saucepan add wild rice and broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce rice to simmer and cook for 20 minutes, or as directed on package. When cooked stir in a splash balsamic vinegar and lime juice. Then, add dried cranberries, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, kale, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Gently fill cooked pumpkins with wild rice, and top with the pumpkin lids.
VEGAN – VEGETARIAN – WHEAT-FREE – GLUTEN-FREE – DAIRY-FREE – SOY-FREE