Harvest your pumpkins
Your pumpkin patch will either be full of burgeoning fruit or completely spent!
Avoid the temptation to harvest your pumpkins early.  Wait until they have turned a rich golden colour.  When ready, cut them off the vines leaving a 10cm stem attached.  Cure them outside in the sun for 5 - 10 days to harden their rinds, then store them in a single layer in a cool, well ventilated room.
When properly stored they should last for 2 - 3 months.
 Vital Veggies Pumpkin Soup
Ingredients for 3 - 4 people:
  • 1 tbs organic coconut oil
  • 1/2 large onion, minced
  • 1/2 tsp minced fresh ginger
  • 1/4 tsp minced fresh red chilli
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • dash of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup roasted pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup cooked chick peas
  • 250ml coconut milk
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • Heat the coconut oil in a large pot and gently cook the minced onion for a few minutes. 
  • Add ginger, then chilli, then all the spices to the onion and cook gently for 1 - 2 minutes. 
  • Mix in the roasted pumpkin and chick peas and stir to coat with spices.
  • Add coconut milk and stock, bring to the boil, then simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Blend the soup in a food processor or Vitamix until frothy.
  • Serve the soup hot with some lightly cooked broccoli.
Vital Veggies Pumpkin and Avocado Salad
Ingredients for 4 people:
  • 400g pumpkin
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tbs chopped fresh coriander
  • 1 tbs chopped fresh mint
  • 1 tbs Thai sweet chilli sauce
  • 2 tbs finely chopped red onion
  • 1 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp soft brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp Himalayan salt (or to taste)
  • 1 large avocado
  • a few pepitas or sunflower sprouts to scatter on top (optional)
  • Scrape the seeds from inside the pumpkin.  Cut the pumpkin into thin slices.  Remove the skin.  Cook in a large pan of simmering water until just tender.  Remove from the heat and drain.
  • Whisk together the oil, coriander, mint, sweet chilli sauce, onion, vinegar, sugar and salt in a small bowl.
  • Cut the avocado in half.  Remove the seed.  Peel the skin off the avocado halves then cut the flesh into thin slices.
  • Place the warm pumpkin with the prepared avocado in a serving bowl.  Gently toss coriander dressing through and serve immediately, scattered with pepitas (green pumpkin seeds) or sunflower sprouts.
Note: You can mix some finely minced fresh chilli into the dressing to zing it up even more!

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