Pumpkin Nutritional Benefits

Cucurbita maxima is the botanical name for pumpkins. Pumpkin nutritional benefits make this fall vegetable important to our diet. They grow in all shapes, sizes and colors. Pumpkins have earned a subcategory of their own when using them traditionally for Halloween and Thanksgiving. Carving the Halloween pumpkin can be great fun, make sure to save the seeds for planting in the spring. The Cucurbita family has many relatives, which include cucumber, squash and baby marrow.

Pumpkin Nutritional Benefits

Pumpkins provide excellent nutrition especially pumpkin seeds which contains essential fatty acids, proteins, vitamin B and zinc. The actual flesh of the pumpkin contains Vitamin A and C, Calcium, Thiamine, Phosphorous and Potassium. Pumpkin keeps your whole body healthy by building your immunity. Eating pumpkins help to keep the skin and eyes healthy, plus there is a lot of dietary fiber in Pumpkin.

Tips on Harvesting and Cooking Pumpkin

The beauty of Pumpkin is that you can store it over a long period of time. Pumpkins spread their beautiful tendrils when they grow, which bear edible leaves and flowers and finally succulent fruit, which can be used in many ways. You can pick pumpkin leaves and flowers and add to them into a salad, or cook them like spinach. Pumpkin can be baked, boiled, fried and roasted or eaten raw or made into soups, breads and fritter. Pumpkin ice cream and pumpkin jam are yummy treats. Raw pumpkin seeds have more nutritional benefits than roasted ones. Dried pumpkin seeds are also great to nibble when hungry. Pumpkin seeds can also be mixed with sunflower seeds, sesame, nuts and dried fruit are a beneficial healthy snack.

Pumpkin leaf and flower recipe

Harvest young leaves and flowers from the pumpkin vine. Wash the leaves and flowers with cool water. Strip the leaves of spines. Chop up one onion. Fry the onion lightly. Add the leaves and fry till tender. Sprinkle with soy sauce, salt and pepper. Add the chopped flowers and remove from the heat. Serve with cous cous, rice or fresh bread.

How to Grow Pumpkins

The pumpkins tear shaped seeds are planted in a mound in the garden. Add lots of compost to the mound. Four to six pumpkin seeds can be planted in each mound. Allow 3-4 meters between the mounds. The pumpkin trails and spreads itself out. Pumpkins make a very good ground cover. You can use a trellis to grow pumpkins in an urban environment.

What to grow in your Garden with Pumpkins

Your Pumpkins will enjoy the company of Nasturtiums, Mint, Beans and Radish. Pumpkins love to grow under corn. Potatoes are not good as neighbors for Pumpkin.

Pumpkin Nutritional Benefits outweigh their awkwardness and heaviness so don't be shy to use it in the kitchen. Remember to compost the parts of the pumpkin not used in the cooking process to help your garden grow healthy vegetables, fruit or flowers in the coming summer.

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