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Avoiding waste at Halloween

It’s that beautiful (albeit rainy) time of year again, and with autumn comes Halloween. Though things might be a little different for the holiday this year, no doubt pumpkins will be a popular addition to the decor.

But what to do with these spooky squashes when the Halloween spirit has departed?! Around 120,000 tonnes of food waste is disposed of across Norfolk and Suffolk in a year, much of which could have been eaten or composted instead of thrown away; so, here are a few things you can do with your pumpkins!

Food for wildlife

Foxes, badgers, squirrels and hedgehogs will all have a nibble on pumpkin; you can chop up your jack’o’lantern and make it a snack’o’lantern for visiting wildlife. The seeds can be used too! Just dry them in the oven at 180C/Gas Mark 4 for ten minutes and put them in your bird feeder. You can even have a go at making a creepy bird feeder from the rest of the pumpkin!

Cook it!

From pumpkin wedges to pumpkin soup, pumpkin cake, pumpkin pie, pumpkin mulled wine, pumpkin crisps and of course, pumpkin spiced latte; there’s a pumpkin recipe for everyone. Packed full of vitamins, with so much scooped out and binned when carving, it really is worth having a go! I’ve added a recipe at the end, but do have a look online at what else you can bake or make, it’ll be like walking the halls of Hogwarts!

Compost it or pass it on!

If you have a garden, pumpkins can make for very rich compost. No garden? No worries, just pop anything you don’t use into a food waste caddy or see if anywhere nearby is running a pumpkin collection, or if local gardens or allotments would want them for compost! Local zoos and animal sanctuaries often take pumpkin donations as well, so keep a look out!

Wishing you all the very best of this beautiful season.

Pumpkin Spiced Latte

1. Place 2 tsp pumpkin purée into a large heatproof glass.

2. Add a pinch each of cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg.

3. Stir in a 30ml espresso coffee shot.

4. Heat 250ml milk of your choice in a saucepan until steaming and frothed.

5. Pour the hot milk into the heatproof glass and top with froth.

6. Stir to combine then dust with more cinnamon before drinking.

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