This time of year you can see pumpkins everywhere you go, but did you know that pumpkins could be very beneficial in regards to your eye health? These large gourds are not only for carving and pumpkin pie, they are one of the best super foods out there, full of antioxidants, which fight many different types of illnesses in the body. They are especially beneficial in keeping your eyes healthy because of the high level of beta-carotenes that are found within. These antioxidants can be found in fresh pumpkin and in canned pumpkin as well. Your eyes convert the beta-carotene into retinol, which is what truly is important for the optimal eye health. The retinol in then changed into retinoic acid which is involved in growth and cell differentiation in the eyes.
Absorbing oto much beta-carotene in your system is by no means bad for your health, but it could make you look a little bit more like a pumpkin than you might like. An excess of beta-carotene in the body will result in brief yellow/orange hue to the skin. Don’t worry, though. You would have to eat quite a lot of pumpkin at one time to have such results.
Pumpkin is incredibly delicious when used in a savory application in the kitchen. Roasting pumpkin is one of the best ways to achieve such results because the roasting process not only softens the pumpkin’s hard texture, but also brings to life a buttery sweetness that is perfect for this time of year. This recipe utilizes this technique, which will result in a deliciously warm and velvety soup that will leave you wanting more.
- 2 small pumpkins, cut in half & seeds removed
- 1 large onion, diced
- Extra virgin olive oil, for brushing
- Heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons of cinnamon
- ½ easpoon of nutmeg
- ½ tablespoon of cumin
- 1/2 tablespoon of coriander
- Vegetable stock, enough to cover vegetables in pot
- Crème Fraiche, for garnish
- Pumpkin seeds, or pepitas, for garnish
- Salt and pepper
- Cut pumpkins in half and remove seeds and stem. Put onto cookie sheet and brush with oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pour cream into pumpkin– a small puddle. Sprinkle a small amount of spices onto pumpkin too. Roast in oven at 375 degrees for about an hour or until pumpkin is soft.
- Slowly sweat onion in oil until fragrant. Once the pumpkin is finished roasting, scrape off the skin and add with onion. Break up with a spoon.
- Cover with vegetable stock, and cook until everything is smooth.
- Add the rest of spices to soup along with a good splash of cream.
- Season with salt and pepper, and then blend until silk smooth
- Garnish with dollop of crème Fraiche and pumpkin seeds