Carving Pumpkin Bowls for Your Party Table
As a kid, I loved making jack o’lanterns with my dad. We’d carve away in the basement, collect the pumpkin seeds, hand them off to my mom for roasting and then head out to the front porch to light up our creations. Well, I’m not a kid anymore, but you’ll still find me carving pumpkins in my kitchen. However, I’m putting my pumpkins to a different use and transforming them into party bowls. That’s right, instead of putting my hummus, guacamole and salsa in a regular bowl, it goes in the carved out pumpkins!
Here are a few tips for carving your pumpkin bowls:
1. When you go pumpkin picking, buy a few extra to dress up your dips.
2. Pick the right size and shape pumpkins or gourds (yes, those cute multi-colored mini pumpkins are actually gourds). Choose pumpkins that are wider rather than taller – you want guests to be able to scoop their dip without brushing their hand against the side of the pumpkin. Smaller sugar pumpkins and pumpkin shaped gourds work well. Remember that for the right presentation, the pumpkin should be filled close to the top with dip; the bigger the pumpkin, the more dip, so be conscious of size when buying.
3. When ready to carve your pumpkin for a container, wash outside of pumpkins thoroughly and dry.
4. Depending on the size and shape of your pumpkin/gourd, you can either cut out the top like you would a jack o’lantern (this is best for a shallow pumpkin, as pictured) for a sugar pumpkin with a little more height and width, slice off the top of the pumpkin where the pumpkin starts getting wide (not right at the top, you want the mouth of the container to be at its widest).
5. Scoop out inside of pumpkin, removing all seeds and strings, you can use a large metal spoon to scrape the inside clean.