Thursday, November 2, 2017

Are All Pumpkins Created Equal?

Today's pumpkin is a "Long Island Cheese", a fun, rounded, disc-shaped pumpkin with a nut-brown skin and wonderful flesh.

Do you and your friends talk about "flesh" when you discuss pumpkins? I read a pumpkin article not too long ago that described the "Fairytale" pumpkin (a version of a French heirloom pumpkin) as the kind of pumpkin that ... when ripe... makes a chef salivate.

Now that's a reaction to write home about!

All pumpkins are not created equal. We've done regular American-style pie pumpkins.... And they come out alright but need substantial cooking down, so too moist...

And then there was the Silver Moon a few weeks ago.... and that was much better. Thick flesh, cooks well, doesn't need a bunch of water to steam-roast, and the taste is marvelous.

But today I worked with the Long Island Cheese, named because it resembles a big cheese round with waxed netting...

I love this classic shape in a butternut squash color! These guys make perfect "stackers".... and great eating!

Isn't this such a pretty pumpkin? And with the small seed cavity inside, it's got great thick meat and a thin skin.

Peeled and cut into pieces, sprinkled with brown sugar and cinnamon, salt and pepper for a sweet/savory blend.  And this is what it looked like about 45 minutes later at 350°...
I did notice that it stuck to the foil, so next time a light spraying of canola oil will help fix that!
Roasted... Fresh from the oven, absolutely delicious. Roasted and lightly sweetened and spiced. SO GOOD!

I cut half of the two squashes/pumpkins into chunks for eating... then roasted the rest at 350°, covered but no water, for about 90 minutes... and this is what it produced. Once it was fork-tender, I scraped the meat of the pumpkin wedges into a bowl, added one stick (8 ounces) of butter, a 1/4 cup of brown sugar, a teaspoon of cinnamon and then added a little more brown sugar.

Just because!

This part of the pumpkin made a wonderful and fairly big bowl of perfect mashed squash pumpkin, NOT SOGGY at all, great texture, color and flavor.

This was a wonderful pumpkin squash!!!!! It gets a 4 STAR rating! It's right up there with my FAVORITE PUMPKIN, the blue Jarrahdale.

Blue towers of deliciousness!

This is why we've become so popular with our stacking pumpkins! Great look, great choices, wonderful range of color!
The blue pumpkin is special. It is about the most perfect one I've toyed with. I've yet to cook with a true "Fairytale" pumpkin, I'll make sure I do that next year, but the Jarrahdale is amazing. Thick, orange flesh, thick, wonderful taste, very dense flesh, so much pumpkin for your money! 

The blue pumpkins became popular in Australia. To make them feel at home, we say "G'day!" to them each morning. We can't have them getting homesick! Once ripe, they produce the best pumpkin flesh I've used so far. It's a wonderful rich, orange, deep-tasting sweet flesh and it makes great pies, soups, cakes, muffins. They store in the house quite well... I have two big ones that I had to HIDE so Farmer Dave and Farmer Seth wouldn't sell them... 
(back off, farm-boys!!!)

And then of course, there's Halloween... and typical fun stuff going on!

Teen and tween studying....

MacKenzie and Lacey planned and executed a great mid-day Halloween party for all of our daycare/after school buddies and it was awesome!

Team of Fright-givers from the woods of another Halloween party...

And a fun quick supper one night when son Seth made a bowl of chicken salad.... Salad on salad.

But then of course, CANDY has entered the house. Oh, mylanta.

But that will be another blog post, one about dieting and exercise! :)

That's it from the farm this week... and if you see this beautiful book anywhere, yes, darlings, you should grab it...

Still being sold nationwide at Walmarts, Krogers, Walgreens... anywhere mass market books are sold, you should stumble on this beautiful love story. Or... if you want to make sure you get ALL the Love Inspired stories each month... go to our Reader Service site and sign up for monthly delivery. Great books, great perks and no worries about missing your favorites at the store!

Inspirational author/speaker Ruthy Logan Herne is currently tucked away on a farm in Western New York, happily scribbling sweet stories of faith, hope and love... and living her dream of being a published author. A mother and grandmother, with 3 miniature donkeys, she's learned to meld the whimsy with practicality and have fun doing it! Email her at or friend her on facebook... follow her on Twitter @RuthLoganHerne and visit her website where she'll keep you up to date on what's going on with books... and in Ruthy's world!


  1. I’ve seen those pumpkins AND I grew up on Long Island, but I had no idea that was their name.

    I can’t wait to share a squash my daughter bought at the farmers’ market. It’s the dirtiest moldyish-looking thing, but she swears it is amazing. We’ll see.

    Thanks for sharing your bounty, Ruthy.

  2. Cate, I can't wait to see it. There's a squash out there called Sweet Dumpling but it doesn't grow well here... it isn't resistant to our prevalent diseases.

    I'm not sure if the Long Island name came from Long Island or if it's just because cheese rounds were huge on Long Island... So I just went and looked it up! It's considered an heirloom seed pumpkin, so I'm glad someone saved it from extinction.... because it's amazing, Cate. Very smooth and rich and sweet all on its own. It was "domesticated" in the 1860's in New York (so Long Island????) and I'm delighted it's fashionable now!

  3. I'm amazed at the variety of pumpkins on your farm! No wonder folks come from far and wide!

    We have a pumpkin patch or two around here, but none of the interesting varieties. Someday, I'll have to look into the possibilities of growing my own. I'd love to try the Long Island cheese!

    1. Jan, what we've found with growing pumpkins is that they do better if you grow a bunch... because the cross-pollination is super important... and bees. During blossom time there might be 6, 8 or 10 bees in each blossom, working their way up and down. I've never seen such bee action before!

      And Jan, the fun varieties are so cool, aren't they? Some of them don't do well... so we'll assess each one on its production merits and its smile-making ability. If it made customers smile, then it might be worth lower productivity! :)

      And the Long Island Cheese is amazingly delicious. It is even better than butternut squash and I'm in love with the shape!!!

  4. Well, this was pumpkin fascinating. Who knew there was such variety among pumpkins! I must confess to never cooking with pumpkin. Gasp! I always use canned pumpkin from the store. I feel so ashamed! And I have never seen such variety in pumpkins! Wonder what`s up with Canadian farmers? But I aim to make some pumpkin cookies this week. I went to Tim Horton`s for their famous (or so I thought) pumpkin glazed donuts only they didn`t do them this year. Sob! So now I have to make my own pumpkin something and cookies is going to be it. :-)


      Gosh, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin bars (I love these) and pumpkin cake, pie and ice cream... Oh mylanta.

      I love Pumpkin Spice Everything!!!!

  5. The Blue pumpkin is Orange inside? WOW! Isn't God amazing! Could you post a pic of it sometime or send me a pic so I could see? That would be worth planting pumpkins for next year.

    1. Jana, head over to this page of the cafe Blue Pumpkins with Orange Innards! and check them out!

    2. WOW! My mouth literally hung open! I wonder if I could order one of these pumpkins on amazon. :) That is just so Incredible! Planting, growing & eating one of these pumpkins is going on my bucket list!

    3. I checked and Of Course I can order a blue Jarrahdale pumpkin from Amazon! Not just seeds, but the real pumpkin! Isn't America Great?!

  6. Wow. I had no idea there were so many different kinds of pumpkins! I've never cooked a pumpkin so this is great information, should I ever get ambitious enough to try.

    1. LeAnne, if you've ever cooked squash (acorn, butternut, buttercup) then you can cook pumpkin.... and it's kind of pioneer-fun to say you've done it!!!

      This way I figure if lack of world peace threatens Libby's pumpkin canning facility, I can still have my pumpkin pie.


  7. Ruthy, I love your pumpkin photos! I bought two fairytale pumpkins this year and stacked them. But the bottom one must've gotten a bruise or bad spot and rotted! So now I only have one small one you can barely see on the porch. :)