You can use any size of pumpkin for this Dinner in a Pumpkin recipe, but it’s easiest to do with the baby varieties.
Then you can serve one stuffed pumpkin per person and it looks really impressive. For large pumpkins, increase the cooking time.
I’m lucky enough to have a local market in my village and a grower who specialises in lots of lovely varieties of pumpkin. My favourite was this lovely sweet golden nugget baby pumpkin. I hope she grows lots of those again next year, or I’ll have to get some seeds from her and convert even more of my garden!
I filled this one with a lovely aromatic minced beef which filled the
house with it’s delicious aroma. Perfect for a cold winter’s night.
Choose one small pumpkin for each person, or share a slightly larger one between two. Any baby variety will do. You could also use half a butternut at a stretch, not worry about a lid and scoop out a slightly larger hole. This golden nugget baby was enough for two people.
Warm up your oven to moderately hot – about 200 C, 400 F or Gas mark 6.
Ingredients for 2 people
One or half a small pumpkin per person
250g minced beef
1 Onion – diced
Handful of mushrooms – chopped
Clove of garlic – finely chopped or crushed
Teaspoon of finely chopped mixed herbs
You will need to increase the ingredients if you are doing more than one or two small pumpkins.
How to make Dinner in a Pumpkin
Fry up the mince with the onion, mushrooms and garlic. Add a little water and a stock cube to form a gravy, but don’t make it too wet.
Create a bowl with your pumpkin by cutting off the top and taking out the seeds.
Tip: If you cut a couple of notches as you take off the lid, it will stay on in the oven better. Otherwise if it falls off, fix it on with a wooden or metal skewer or toothpicks.
When your mince is cooked through, spoon the mixture into the pumpkin and put the lid back on.
Bake in the oven for about half an hour. Test the pumpkin flesh with a knife to see if it is soft. Larger pumpkins will need a bit longer.
When serving, take the lid off and grate a little tasty cheese on top.