Tip elaborated by Ametller Origen, BBHI collaborating entity in the field of nutrition.
As it starts to get cold, the pumpkin begins to gain prominence in dishes and festivities. Pumpkins are grown in Spain from September and until April approximately.
The pumpkin stands out for its sweet taste and the hardness of its skin, which gives it more protection and enables it to be preserved for longer. Furthermore, you can use almost all of it—the seeds, the pulp, even the flower— and you can include it in a variety of recipes.
The pumpkin has a very versatile flavor and it works well in both sweet and savory dishes. Therefore, it can be incorporated into starters in the form of cream soup, vegetable brochette
or sautéed in a salad, and it can also be used as a sauce or garnish for meats and fish. In addition, it contains natural sugars. If added to traditional cake and muffin recipes it gives them a special touch and the amount of sugar normally contained in these recipes can be reduced or eliminated.
Of the winter varieties of pumpkin, you should select the heaviest ones, since they have less water and the skin is thicker. You must also check that the skin is firm. A pumpkin should be preserved whole, in a cool well-ventilated place away from sunlight. Once it has been cut open, you should cover it with cling film or place it in a closed container and store it in the fridge.
Pumpkins are 90% water and the rest is mostly carbohydrates, providing minimal amounts of fats and proteins. This composition makes it a low-calorie vegetable. It contains red, orange and yellowish beta-carotene pigments, which are precursors of vitamin A. In our intestines, these are converted into vitamin A. Meanwhile, if it is cooked it gives us vitamin A directly, which helps to maintain our skin and vision. Additionally, it helps to boost the immune system, which is ideal for cold periods.