Home / Thanksgiving  / Pumpkin’s Pride: 7 Recipes For Fall Holiday Feasts

Pumpkin’s Pride: 7 Recipes For Fall Holiday Feasts

This lovely Peruvian- Inspired Pumpkin and Rice Tower, courtesy of Peruvian healthy food writer Morena Escardo, is perfect for a dinner party. Credit: Copyright 2015 Morena Escardo/ TheWeiserKitchen

This lovely Peruvian- Inspired Pumpkin and Rice Tower, courtesy of Peruvian healthy food writer Morena Escardo, is perfect for a dinner party. Credit: Copyright 2015 Morena Escardo/ TheWeiserKitchen

Everyone is always shocked when I use pumpkin in Latino or Middle Eastern foods. But it’s nothing new. Not for Jews and not for me.

For Jews of Sephardic or Mizrachi backgrounds, edible gourds — pumpkins and thick-skinned squashes (which I often think of as winter squashes) — are everyday foods. Pumpkin is also a vital part of the Jewish New Year’s feast. The pumpkin, or k’raa in Hebrew, is a symbolic food connected to the wish that evil decrees be torn, squashed, quashed, vacated or otherwise gone. Why so many possibilities? The meaning varies from community to community, and the way those edicts are dissolved is a source of fun and global creative wordplay. But the pumpkin, no matter the variety, is always on the table.

My paternal roots as an Ashkenazi Northeasterner run for four generations, and pumpkin simply meant fall and Thanksgiving. It was ubiquitous, and came in cans aplenty. For me it was all-American food all the way growing up, but until I started traveling the world, tasting and cooking along the way, I didn’t realize that it was global. Or in any way Jewish-esque.

So when it comes to fall and the multitude of Jewish and American holidays, pumpkin reigns supreme in my kitchen. Here are some dishes that feature this versatile squash:

Main photo: This lovely vegetable dish called Pumpkin Arroz Tapado, courtesy of Peruvian healthy-food writer Morena Escardo, is perfect for a dinner party. Credit: Copyright 2015 Morena Escardo/TheWeiserKitchen



Zester Daily contributor Tami Weiser is a Connecticut-based food writer and editor, recipe developer, culinary educator and caterer. An alumnus of Vassar College and a former attorney, Weiser also studied at the Jewish Theological Seminar of America and taught Hebrew language, Jewish ethnography and Jewish culinary tradition for many years and is a high honors graduate of the Institute for Culinary Education in New York. She has also worked as a private chef and historical researcher. Her website, TheWeiserKitchen.com, is a culinary resource for creative kosher and non-kosher cooks alike.

NO COMMENTS

POST A COMMENT