We have had pumpkin on the brain. Did you know pumpkins are a member of the vine crop family called cucurbits? How about the name pumpkin comes from the Greek word "pepon" meaning large melon? Or pumpkins are 90% water and their flowers are edible? Or pumpkins originated in Central America? Or in 1883 the US Supreme Court officially determined a tomato and a pumpkin are vegetables. Botanically speaking they are fruit because they have seeds. (Source: Pumpkin Fact Sheet from Topsfield Fair)
We baked the other two pumpkins after using the smallest one in our Harvest Soup for Michaelmas. Then we needed to find time to do some baking. Finally this weekend, we found some time. We started with pumpkin muffins. We started with this recipe from All Recipes. I cut the recipe in half since I did not want to make 36 muffins and made a few changes.
We did not have any raisins so we skipped those. We used 2 cups of whole wheat flour and 3/4 cup of oatmeal. We were low on sugar, so we used 2 cups of brown sugar very lightly packed. We used a teaspoon of all the powders that called for 1 1/2 and used 15 ounces of pumpkin puree from our pumpkins. Otherwise we followed the recipe by cutting in half. They came out delicious!
We also made some pumpkin crafts. Today I will share the ones we made out of ribbon and paper. We tried the paper ones last year and as I was looking at the ribbons this year, I thought how fun would those be, so I tried them.
You start with four equal in length piece of ribbon (I found the wired ones work best), two brass brads, some brown and green construction paper and some glue. To start find the approximate center of one ribbon and stick a brad through it and then add the other three ribbons in similar fashion and close the brad. Then bend the ribbons up and taking the outside ribbon first stick each end into the second brad until all the ribbon edges are secured. Close the brad and turn your pumpkin over. Now you can add your stem, leaves and tendrils. See below for that tutorial. For an easier version for kids, the paper works since you can punch the holes where the brads go (three holes in each strip). Otherwise the instructions are the same.
To make the stem, take a strip of brown construction paper and roll it. Put a little glue to secure the edge. Cut the leaves from the green construction paper. I cut mine on a fold so the two leaves would be one piece. Then take a very thin strip of the green paper and roll it around a pencil tightly to curl it for the tendril. A piece of curling ribbon could also be used.
Then you just glue the leaves and tendrils together and then onto your pumpkin and then glue the stem. Hold the stem for a bit for the glue to set and then leave it alone until it dries.
If you use ribbon without wire, you may need to add some support on the inside to get your pumpkin to stand up on its own. I used a rolled piece of orange construction paper in the top left one and the one directly underneath it shows you the pumpkin without it.
Well that is enough pumpkin for tonight, but stay tuned. I will share more tomorrow!!