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How to choose the best pumpkin for cooking

Avoid buying a rotten pumpkin

Choosing the best squash (Co+op, welcome to the table)

Pumpkins come in all sizes, colours, and shapes. The inside content is also different. Some pumpkins are sweet and soft, others are stringy and watery, and others are bland and crunchy even after cooking. Although some people detest them, pumpkins are so rich in nutrients and you should probably try out various recipes. Maybe your cooking method is the problem.

But like watermelons, it’s not always easy to select the best pumpkin in the market unless you know them so well. The last thing you want is to buy a huge pumpkin only to find out later that it’s rotten inside. To be on the safer end, be very careful and put in mind these tips when selecting a pumpkin for cooking:

1. Check out for bruises


Even though the seller might convince you that the bruise is just on the top, you can never be too certain of how deep it has gone. Some bruises extend deep down affecting the inside of the pumpkin.

2. Get one with a stalk

And not just a stem but a healthy and brown stem. You might not know if a pumpkin is mature until you cut it. To avoid falling prey, make sure the pumpkin you are buying has a strong and brown stem. While some may lack the stem and still be good enough, you do not want to take chances.

3. Avoid one with soft spots


In most cases, soft spots are a sign of rotting. While one spot may not mean that the whole pumpkin is rotten, some part in the inside may be rotten. Just take your time to examine the pumpkin before buying.

4. Feel the weight

You don’t want those pumpkins that are large yet the inside is just a hollow space and very little flesh. Feel the weight of the pumpkin and judge if it’s right for the size. If not, choose another one.


With the above tips, you are guaranteed of choosing a good pumpkin. The best thing about pumpkins is that you can keep them for weeks and you don’t have to refrigerate them so long as they are not bruised and you do not cut them. And of course, you can make so many dishes with them including chapatis.


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