How to Clean a Pumpkin
Most people agree carving pumpkins is fun and eating pumpkins is delicious, but cleaning pumpkins is a hassle. Since green cleaning is our expertise, we thought we’d share some tips and advice to help make this dreaded task easy (naturally), if not necessarily fun.
Step 1: Find the perfect pumpkin
If your goal is to carve pumpkins for decoration, then you need to start with a perfect, healthy specimen. First, find a pumpkin that is completely orange. Green pumpkins are unripe and trying to clean or carve one will be harder than you bargained for.
Narrow the contenders down even farther and limit your possibilities to only medium-sized pumpkins, which are best for carving.
Once you’ve found one you like, do a final check by pressing on it with your thumbnail. It should resist denting or cracking, an indication that it’s ripe and ready to be carved.
And, most importantly, lift your perfect pumpkin by the bottom, not by the stem.
Step 2: Prepare for Cleaning
Keep your pumpkin in a cool, dark area until you and the kids are ready to start carving. When you’re ready to go, gently wash your pumpkin with cool water and allow it to dry completely.
While it’s drying, assemble your tools: sharp knife, steel ice cream scooper, steel melon baller, clean cloth.
Step 3: Open the Pumpkin
Carefully holding the stem as an anchor, with a sharp knife cut the top away from the pumpkin – taking care not to make the incision too far down the pumpkin, leaving yourself room for carving your pattern on the face. Gently lift the top away from the pumpkin and cut away the seeds and tendrils attached to the piece. Don’t forget to set the seeds aside for cleaning and roasting later! Pumpkin seeds have medicinal health value as well as being tasty snacks.
With the top set aside, turn your pumpkin over and cut out the bottom of the pumpkin to create a flat surface for your jack o’lantern to rest when you’re finished with your artistic handiwork. Cutting away the bottom makes it easier to place over candles and keeping the top removable allows for smoke to escape and the stem adds an authentic flare.
Step 4: Scrape out the seeds
Keep your pumpkin inverted so you can reach through the bottom opening to remove the seeds. Using your steel ice-cream scooper, reach into the pumpkin and scrape the seeds from the top of the pumpkin to the base. The lining will pull away easier than scraping top to bottom. To make reaching easier, it’s fine to move the pumpkin onto its side and move it as necessary. When most of the seeds have been removed, switch to your steel melon baller to remove smaller areas or leftover seeds and gunk. When everything has been removed, pat the inside of the pumpkin with a clean cloth to remove any remaining moisture.
Now you’re ready to carve your pumpkin! If cleaning the pumpkin is all the cleaning you’d like to do this Halloween, schedule a pre-and post-party clean up with us. We prepare your home for guests, help out at the event and clean up afterwards using environmentally friendly cleaning products. Contact us to schedule your event cleaning service today.