Boil, steam, stir-fry/saute, braise/stew, bake, pressure cook, or microwave
Mature pumpkins typically turn orange, although some varieties turn color early in the season and continue to grow larger. Mature pumpkins will have a hard rind. Pick pumpkins when skin is hard and resists thumbnail pressure. An indentation made by a thumbnail pressed into the fruit near the stem does not fill with fluid when pumpkin is ready to harvest.
Usually should be picked after a light frost kills the vine but before the first hard freeze.
Cut stems 1 to 2 inches from the end of the fruit leaving stem in place to delay decay in storage.
Cure pumpkins to dry and harden shells completely before storing. To cure, place the pumpkin in a warm (75° to 80°) well-ventilated place for a week or two.
Store for long-term at 50° to 55° F at 50 to 57% humidity. Will store up to 6 months in these conditions. Periodically inspect for soft spots.
Storage and Preservation Methods
Common storage at 50° to 55° F at humidity of 50 to 57 percent. Will store up to 6 months in these conditions.
Is also suitable for freezing (in cooked form) or canning.
Pumpkin plants produce both male and female blossoms. To aid in pollination, select a male blossom (with a straight stem) and rub the stamen of a female blossom (with a bulge behind the blossom) to pollinate.