Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Pig with Jack-O-Lantern
Originally uploaded by
Contrary Goddess.

On the farm, it just isn't a problem. The jack-o-lanterns are fun, but really, they are farm animal food to begin with (it takes a sugar pumpkin to make a pie). Our grandfathers grew big pumpkins to feed to the cows in winter -- they keep well and are a highly nutritious supplement for them. They work just as well for pigs and chickens.

Make this photo big, it is worth it.

p.s. below is a sugar pumpkin holding pumpkin soup -- chicken broth, pureed pumpkin and cream, spiced with your regular pie spices but also enough mustard to make you sweat! Cooked of course. Mmmm good.

Soup's Served
Originally uploaded by
Contrary Goddess.


dragonfly183 said...

that looks really good. can we et a recipie?

the Contrary Goddess said...

ummm, that's as close to a recipe as I get, usually. Base=chicken broth, preferably homemade, and I'm not afraid of fat so I do not de-fat it. Cook some sugar pumpkin, cut it up, combine with broth, puree, heat some more, spice, add cream, taste, adjust spices, etc. Amounts are just by feel. And different amounts of stuff will give a different character to the soup, so a lot of it depends on what we feel like that day.

arcolaura said...

What is a sugar pumpkin? Would they grow here?

I got a few pumpkins about a hand-span in diameter (maybe 9 inches) this year, but most are only around fist-sized, and still greenish inside even when they look ripe. Our cat (named Pumpkin) was caught rolling one of these pumpkins around the house the other day.

jules said...

So, you're saying that the regular ole pumpkin I bought off the pile at the farm market won't make a pie? Or it will make a pie, but not a good one? Hmmm, wonder where we can get a sugar pumpkin...

the Contrary Goddess said...

jules, you'd have to ask the farmer, or be savvy to the difference. "Sugar" pumpkins are usually heavier, thicker fleshed, than "field" pumpkins, and their flesh isn't stringy. We didn't have any luck at all with pumpkins this year so I bought our jack-o-lanterns and the sugar pumpkin. When I was by the produce stand, I didn't see anything but field pumpkins, so I went in and asked and the proprietor pointed out he had those nice green cinderella-type pie pumpkins. Oooh boy, and it was great. We did save the seeds.

Laura, I don't know if they'd grow there or not. I'd say, read your seed catalog and count the days!

Anonymous said...

You can sometimes tell the difference by hefting the pumpkin. A sugar pumpkin is heavy for its size since it will typically be moister, thicker flesh, and small seed cavity. A field pumpkin will be light for its size and sound hollow when you thump it (mainly because it IS hollow). It will have thinner flesh and a large, sparce seed cavity.

But not always.

Good luck making a pie out of a field pumpkin. The flesh is tough, fiberous strings and no amount of cooking much alters it.

A pie pumpkin you can slice up raw and eat with dip.

Laurie said...

About the photo - you're right - it has a wonderful repetition of swooping lines and shapes. It was worth a second look! Thanks!

Ren said...

The soup-filled pumpkin brought back good memories! My Mum used to make tapioca filled pumpkins at Halloween. Holidays were all about the food.

I hope pumpkins aren't too hard to grow here, we've missed them. The Gulf Coast isn't a great place for them...or my garden wasn't anyway.

the Contrary Goddess said...

laurie -- yep, the photo only really looks that way on full screen but it almost makes me dizzy! Pumpkins aren't generally hard to grow here, but they require water and we didn't tend them during the summer drought. They love rich rich soil, so right in poop, or the compost, or wherever, is a great spot.

And you know, it really wasn't a total bust for us -- we got a few cushaws. Cushaws make the BEST pies (just like pumpkin except cushaw) but they don't keep worth a hoot.

laura said...

just a funny thing i kept meaning to tell you about and the title of your post reminded me:

going to the store one day and i see the usual "reduce, reuse, recycle" bumper sticker.....on a BRAND NEW VW or some sort of car. that just cracked me up!! they just don't get their own stupid sticker.

the Contrary Goddess said...

glad I wasn't drinking my coffee, la!

julie persons said...

love the pig picture!!!

Ren said...

Hey, maybe it's running on biodiesel!! (yeah right).

Anonymous said...

I love biodiesel.

It reminds me of Douglas Adam's (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) Ravenous Bugbladder Beast of Tral which was so mindbogglingly stupid that if thought that if it closed it's eyes, you couldn't see it.

If one can't actually SEE the environmental damage cause by refining foodstuffs into motor fuel, then there isn't any harm caused by it.