Carving a Pumpkin for Halloween
Halloween time is not only a time for fun costumes; it is also a time to make Jack-O'-Lanterns out of fresh pumpkins. The process can be a bit messy, but if you are prepared you can avoid making a mess and make clean up simple. If you are really careful, you can even recycle the guts of the pumpkin to make roasted pumpkin seeds or the filling for pumpkin pie!
Things You Will Need:Newspaper
A pumpkin stencil or a pen
Find a decent sized work surface; a kitchen table or the floor in the basement is good choices.
Cover your work area in newspaper; this is going to protect the surface from pumpkin guts.
Wash off your pumpkin; pumpkins usually have dirt on them and you want to get it all off before beginning
Cut a circle around the stem of the pumpkin using a small knife. Make sure you cut away from yourself in case you slip. Your hole should be large enough that your hand can fit inside the pumpkin with ease.
Take a large spoon and scoop out all the guts and strings from the pumpkin until the pumpkin is nice and clean on the inside. If you want to cook with the insides of the pumpkin, scoop it into a bowl for later use, if you are planning on throwing it away, just wrap it up in newspaper.
Next, find the side of the pumpkin that looks the best for your design. If you are using a stencil, tape your stencil to this side. If you are doing it by hand, draw your design on this side of the pumpkin.
Using a small kitchen knife, carefully carve your design out of the face of the pumpkin, making sure that the cuts are uniform on the inside and the outside. This is very key if you plan on putting a candle inside as the light will have a hard time passing through tapered cuts.
Throw the pumpkin pieces you just cut out in the garbage.
Light a votive candle and place it inside!
That is it, you've just carved your pumpkin into a Jack-O-Lantern.