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How to Eat Your Pumpkin

Bought a pumpkin for Halloween? Don't waste it! Here are some recipes to help you make the most of this star of autumn/winter produce, courtesy of Good Food Oxfordshire, whose ninth pumpkin festival is running until 6th November.

Cherwell Collective’s Pumpkin Hummus


250g dry chickpeas (soaked in water overnight and simmered for one hour on low heat and left to cool in liquid) or 1 tin ready to use

Roasted pumpkin (250g) and seeds

Roasted garlic and olive oil (roast unpeeled in cloves in olive oil in a low heat oven until soft. Let cool, peel, pop garlic back into oil)



Fresh herbs for garnish

Spice mix:

2 parts cumin powder 2 parts paprika powder 2 parts garlic powder

2 parts salt 1 part pepper 1 part onion powder

  • Juice one lemon. Add equal amounts of lemon juice and tahini to a food processor (about 50-100ml each).

  • Pulse 1 min (at least), scrape down sides, pulse again until whipped and smooth.   Add about 25-50ml of roasted garlic oil and the cloves of garlic (to taste). Pulse until smooth. 

  • Add spice (to taste, usually a tsp or so). Pulse until smooth. Add 250g cooked chickpeas.

  • Pulse for 1 min (time yourself). Scrape down. Pulse again. Scrape down. Pulse again. Add 250g pumpkin meat and pulse until smooth.  If you want fluffier hummus add a few spoons of COLD water. 

Serve with a well in the middle, pour in the rest of your roasted garlic oil and garnish with toasted pumpkin seeds, fresh herbs, and a dust of paprika powder. 

This recipe was supplied by the Climatarian Kitchen.

Riverford’s Squash and Black Bean Chilli


1 medium butternut, large onion or smallish crown prince squash

2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for roasting

1 large onion, chopped

4 celery sticks, finely chopped

1 red pepper, deseeded and chopped

1 green pepper, deseeded and chopped

3 large garlic cloves, crushed

1 tsp dried marjoram or handful

of fresh oregano

2 bay leaves

2 tsp ground cumin

1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes

2 x 400g cans black beans, rinsed and drained

juice of 1 lime (2pprox.. 2 tbsp)

small bunch of coriander, finely chopped

salt and black pepper

grated cheese and/or soured

  • Heat the oven to 180°C/Gas Mark 4. If stuffing a whole squash, cut it in half, scoop out the seeds and pulp, and bake in the oven for about 40 mins. Alternatively, roast in chunks. Heat the oil in a large heavy pan over a medium-high heat. Add the onion and celery.

  • Reduce the heat to medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes until soft. Add the peppers and continue cooking for a further 10 minutes or so, stirring frequently. Stir in the garlic, and cook for another minute. Add the chilli, 1-2 teaspoons of salt, 1 teaspoon of black pepper, the herbs and cumin. Give everything a good mix then add the tomatoes. Simmer, uncovered, for about 30 minutes.

  • Stir in the beans and continue to simmer for a further 10 minutes. Remove the bay leaves, stir in the lime juice and coriander and adjust the seasoning to taste. If using roast squash, add it now, heat through, and then serve. If stuffing a whole squash, fill each roasted squash half with the filling mixture. Top with grated cheese or soured cream (or both), if you like.

This recipe was shared with kind permission by Riverford Organic Oxfordshire. Find this and more delicious recipes on the Riverford Organic website.

Iraqi Women Art and War Oxford’s Pumpkin Soup


1 onion

1 pumpkin

A few dried apricots

Oil to fry

Tomato sauce or paste

Lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste

  • Chop and fry the onions with the oil.

  • Cut pumpkin into small cubes.

  • Put the tomato paste with spices and the pumpkin cubes for a few minutes, and then put hot water, dried apricots and salt into the soup and leave it on low heat for 10-15 minutes.

  • Serve as it is or put it in the mixer to make a very thick soup.

This pumpkin soup is very popular in the north of Iraq.

This recipe was supplied by Iraqi Women Art & War Oxford. 

GFO’s Cheazy Vegan Pumpkin Pasta Sauce


Vegetables: 1 large onion / 1-2 cloves of garlic / 1 small pumpkin or squash / peashoots or other greens

Seasonings: 2 tbsp oil / 3 tbsp tahini (sesame paste) / Salt and pepper / Nutritional yeast flakes

  • Chop the pumpkin into cubes of around 1 cm. Note: many pumpkins and squashes – such as butternut squash – don’t need to be peeled.

  • Chop the onions finely and either chop or mash the garlic. Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the onions and sweat till they start browning lightly. Add garlic and keep stirring. Add the pumpkin cubes, cover with a lid and stir occasionally.

  • When the pumpkin is soft to the bite, mash it coarsely with a potato masher, leaving some chunky bits in it. Add tahini and water as needed to make a creamy texture. Season with salt, pepper and nutritional yeast.

  • Serve with pasta, rice or potato and top with home-grown peashoots or fresh herbs and toasted pumpkin seeds.

This recipe was composed with the Good Food Cooking Toolkit, a guide for creative cooking without recipes. We encourage you to substitute ingredients as you please.

Abundance Oxford’s Crunchy Seeds


Seeds from a medium pumpkin/ squash

1.5 tbsp sesame oil

2.5 tbsp soy sauce

3 tbsp of nutritional yeast *

1 tsp (or more to taste) of chilli flakes

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180 C (350 F or Gas Mark 4).  Remove the Remove the seeds from the belly of the pumpkin/squash. Toss the seeds and with the sesame oil, soy sauce and nutritional yeast.

  • Spread out onto an oven tray (lightly oil the tray or put onto greaseproof paper or a reusable silicon baking mat). Make sure they are spread apart enough to allow the seeds to roast in the oven. Sprinkle with chilli flakes to taste, and then pop in the oven for 15 minutes or until crispy.Enjoy your snacks long after the pumpkin has been finished – take your moreish crunchy seeds out for autumnal walks on crunchy leaves!

* Nutritional Yeast (not to be confused with bakers or brewer’s yeast) is a great source of B12 can be found in health food stores. Alternatively, if you can’t find it, double the oil to 3tbsp and stir in 1 tbsp marmite until runny.

This recipe was supplied by Abundance Oxford and Disco Soup

Wonky Food Co.’s Spiced Pumpkin, Wonky Onion and Goat’s Cheese Pie


1 kg Pumpkin peeled and cut into thick slices

1 kg Baby spinach

500 g Shortcrust pastry

250 g Rindless goats cheese crumbled

50 g Toasted pumpkin seeds

4 tbs Rapeseed oil

4 tbs Wonky Tangy Onion Relish

1 Egg beaten

3 tbs Chilli flakes

2 tsp Cumin

3 Garlic cloves crushed

Salt, pepper

  • Pre-heat oven to 200/ fan 180/ gas 6. 

  • Put the pumpkin in a baking tin and drizzle over the rapeseed oil. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with the chilli flakes, cumin and crushed garlic. Roast in the oven for 40 minutes, turning over halfway. 

  • Blanch the spinach in boiling water then refresh under cold water before squeezing dry. Season generously with salt and pepper then chop to a fine mince before stirring in the goat’s cheese and toasted pumpkin seeds. 

  • Remove the butternut squash from the oven and allow to cool slightly. 

  • Line your pie dish with shortcrust pastry then cover the bottom with your spinach mix. Layer on the roasted butternut squash and top with the Wonky Tangy Onion Relish. Top with pastry and brush with beaten egg. Bake for 30-35 minutes until the pastry is golden brown on the top. 

Tip: For a vegan version omit the goat’s cheese, use vegan puff pastry or shortcrust and skip the egg wash. 

This recipe was supplied by The Wonky Food Company

If you enjoyed these recipes, stay tuned for more next week!

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