Pumpkins Indicative Of Festive Thankfulness

Let’s have another piece of pumpkin pie; with whipped cream on top, of course.

Of all the pumpkins in the fields, at stores and displayed on porches and window sills in natural form or carved as jack-o-lanterns, the real reason, and best use in our opinion, for pumpkins is good ole pumpkin pie. Well, maybe a little pumpkin bread now and then.

Pumpkins are believed to have originated over 7,000 B.C. They were considered fruit in the time of Jesus when harvest feasts were celebrated. Indians in North America roasted long strips of pumpkin over an open fire. Dried strips were woven into mats. Pilgrims liked the “orange squash” and are credited with baking the first pumpkin pies.

Every fall, our aunt brought us a pumpkin when she returned from an annual deer hunting trip to Wyoming. We were nearly grown before we realized pumpkins could readily be produced locally. Our gift pumpkins were big, or at least they seemed that way to us five decades ago. We carved them and placed a candle inside to brighten the facials.

Seeds were often baked in the oven for a tasty treat, but the pumpkins themselves just rotted away. It was years later when we actually realized pumpkins were source for pie. Before that, we assumed pumpkin for pies only came in cans. So, we tried making pie from a real pumpkin. That was a failure. We couldn’t have been a pilgrim.

Missed seeing the record pumpkin at the state fair this year, but the big ones are among our stops when we’re there. The 975-pound winner required lots of fertilizer and 100 gallons of water daily to gain 25 pounds a day. Sadly, vandals smashed the pumpkin, but Newtongrower Brian Stanley rescued seeds to produce a bigger one next year.

Guinness Book of Record pumpkin was grown in Rhode  Island and weighed 1,502 pounds. That might be Linus’Great Pumpkin? Maybe it could be Cinderella’s carriage, if she’s late; that is  assuming she’s a small midget. Certainly, it would make lots of pies.

Best news of all, pumpkin is good for our health. It has large amounts of the antioxidant, beta-carotene, which converts to vitamin A and performs many functions in the body. Beta-carotene reduces cancers, protects against heart disease and slows
degenerative aging. Pumpkin is high in fiber, and seeds contain much phosphorus.

Pumpkin pie is synonymous with Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s Day and other festive occasions. As we feast on nutritious pumpkin pie, least we not forget Jesus’ words in John 15:5: “I am the vine, ye are the branches. He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.”

Likewise, a reminder for festive times comes as First Thessalonians 5:18 emphasizes: “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”