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The multiple properties of pumpkin

Pumpkin is one of the most “ancient” foods. In fact, pumpkin seeds dating back to the seventh millennium BC have been found. Pumpkin has always offered nourishment and taste, from a perspective that enhances the value of versatility. As we will see in the next paragraphs, there are many pumpkin recipes; however, I would like to focus on the characteristics of the vegetable.

It is a vegetable that provides many nutrients at the cost of a very low caloric intake, which is less than 20 kcal per 100 grams. It also contains a lot of calcium, phosphorus, vitamin C, and even carotenoids. These substances allow the body to independently produce the very important vitamin A. Pumpkin ripens almost exclusively in the autumn months but is available more or less all year round as it is easily preserved.

The best-known varieties of pumpkins

Though the pumpkin is thought of as a consistent, monolithic vegetable, this perception is more a product of stereotype than fact. In fact, there are many types of pumpkins that differ in shape, consistency, colour, and nutritional value. Here is a quick overview of the most important pumpkin varieties:

  • Baby Boo. It’s the classic pumpkin, the one that most adheres to the stereotype. It is orange, round, and has a full-bodied and quite sweet taste. E’quella classica, quella che più aderisce allo stereotipo. E’ arancione, tonda, dal gusto corposo e abbastanza dolce.
  • Neapolitana Long. It is a type of pumpkin characterised by its oblong shape, dark green skin, and compact, intense orange pulp.
  • Muscat of Provence. It is defined by its pale orange skin, spicy and aromatic flavour, and the presence of some lateral ribs.
  • Violin. Similar to the Neapolitana long, it is, however, characterised by a very rough orange skin. The flavour is more pronounced.
  • Butternut. It is a variety with a characteristic pear shape. The skin is very light, although it tends towards orange. The flavour is strong and slightly sweet.
  • Spaghetti. It is a variety of yellow pumpkin (sometimes slightly orange) with a pulp made up of many edible filaments that, once cooked, have a spaghetti-like appearance. It has a sweet flavour and a round shape.
  • Hokkaido pumpkin. This is a type of pumpkin originally from Central America but now widespread everywhere, especially in Japan. It’s a thin, smooth-skinned pumpkin with a rich, somewhat sweet flavour that tastes like chestnuts.

Some ideas to enhance this vegetable

As already mentioned, it is appreciated above all for its versatility. As long as it is cooked, it can be consumed in a thousand different ways. There are just as many recipes that can enrich any menu. This section was created precisely to honour its versatility.

Alongside classic recipes such as pumpkin risotto, you will find more unique preparations, such as lasagne, rather than salad and pumpkin flan. Pumpkin, given its softness, is often used to create purees and creams; in this section, you will find plenty of them.

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