Growing pumpkins the way we do it in Mochov is quite demanding on manual labour. We grow pumpkins from direct sowing or from quality seedlings. Seedlings are very fragile, so they are planted only manually. During the vegetation, we never use any spraying against weeds. We also have to be very careful during harvesting. We carefully place pumpkins into crates, so they do not get bruised. Suitable storing temperature is 12 – 15°C. If you have pumpkins at home as a decoration, they will last in the room temperature at dry, well ventilated place for several months.
Hokkaido Pumpkin is not too big, but it is very tasty, full of vitamins, and it is known for its healing effects.
This pumpkin, which originated in New England, was first grown by the Japanese on the volcanic soil of the Hokkaido Island. It is literally a vitamin bomb. It contains beta carotene, vitamins B1, B2, B3 and also minerals, including potassium. It can also bind toxins, which it dissolves and flushes out the body.
It can be eaten raw in a variety of salads, boiled, fried, grilled and we can use it to prepare gourmet sauces. It can also be used for sweet dishes.
Its growing is very demanding for heat and it is therefore hard to find in the Central Europe. It has a pear – like shape with plenty of flesh; it belongs among the most economical species, because most of the fruit consists of flesh, not seeds.
Within the pumpkin species, it belongs among the largest fruiting pumpkins with the weight of the fruit around 1-3 kg. It has a spherical or an elongated shape and a creamy, yellow or orange colour. During ripening, the skin hardens. But inside, there is an interesting fibrous flesh that substitutes spaghetti after heat treatment, but it can also be used instead of noodles in soup. If properly stored, it lasts six months to a year.
It comes from the southern part of Mexico, it is very demanding for heat, and therefore it is suitable to grow it in southern countries. Only a few varieties are fit for cultivation in Europe. The fruits are interesting by their baroque shape - immature fruits have rich green colour, ripe ones have cream to brownish colour. The flesh is orange and very thick.
Add diced pumpkin (unpeeled) to the slightly fried onion. After a moment of roasting, add water or broth. Slightly season with salt, pepper and boil for about 25-30 min., until it becomes tender. When done, add a pinch of nutmeg. If you like the soup with bits use masher. If you prefer creamy soup, mix everything. To soften the mixed soup you can add a little normal or sour cream
1 Hokkaido pumpkin, 1 larger onion, extra virgin olive oil or butter, water or vegetable broth (depending on the desired taste), salt, white pepper, nutmeg, sour or normal cream.
Baked Hokkaido Pumpkin
Cut washed pumpkin in half, remove seeds, cut into the horseshoe shaped slices about 1 cm thick, slice peeled potatoes, cut carrots lengthwise and then cut it into pieces, dice the meat. Put everything in a pan, add a little bit of oil, sprinkle with spices and stir so it is coated evenly. Place on the baking paper and once in the oven, bake it at 150-170 degrees for about 45 minutes. Use fork to check that everything is tender. Meanwhile, stir salt and chopped fresh herbs into sour cream. After baking, put everything on a plate and pour the sour cream over it or dip the individual pieces in it.
You do not have to peel the Hokkaido pumpkin, baking tenderizes the surface. You do not have to salt the vegetables, because you will dip it in salted sour cream, but if you want, you can salt it before baking. Sometimes it is enough to salt only the meat before roasting. You can use chicken, fish, and other meats. Quantities of vegetables, pumpkin and meat can be adjusted according to how much you eat and you can also try other vegetables.
1 pc of medium size Hokkaido pumpkin, 4 pieces of carrots, 1 cup of sour cream, 1 bundle of fresh herbs, 4 pieces of potatoes, 500 g of meat, 1 pinch of Provencal herbs, 1 pinch of salt
Knead a dough from the ingredients listed and let it rest. Prepare the filling - remove seeds from the pumpkin, dice it, add water and stew it for 20 minutes. Then strain the water, mash the pumpkin and let it cool down. Add honey, cinnamon, lemon juice, cream, and two eggs and blend the mixture into a smooth cream. Fill greased cake tin with a layer of dough, shape the higher edges and prick the base with a fork. Sprinkle with chopped apricots and nuts and pour in the pumpkin filling. Bake at 180 ° C for 40 minutes. You can also serve it garnished with whipped cream.
Ingredients: 250 g of semi coarse flour, 125 g of butter, 1 egg, 2 tbsps. of sugar, pinch of salt, grated lemon peel.
Filling: about 300 g of pumpkin (butternut, nutmeg, Hokkaido), 2 eggs, 4 tbsps. of honey, 2 tbsps. of sour cream, lemon juice, a pinch of cinnamon, about 100 g of nuts (mixture) and 100 g of dried apricots.
Cook the spaghetti pumpkin either whole, piercing it well with a fork in several places, or cut in half. Boiling takes approximately half an hour, depending on the size. Other possible heat treatment is to bake the pumpkin in the oven: wash it, cut it in half lengthwise, and place it on baking paper by the cut facing down. Set the oven to 180 ° C, preferably in a hot air program. After cooking, remove seeds with a spoon. Rinse and dry them for further processing. Pulp of boiled pumpkin can be plucked by a fork - it breaks into "spaghetti". With those we work further. Spaghetti pumpkin is suitable as a side dish to meat; it can be seasoned with fried onions and spices of your choice.