One evening last week, I was riding my scooter home and I wanted to stock up on my supply of processed hashed browns from my local Jenny Lou's when I noticed that they had a huge supply of massive pumpkins outside of the door. I inquired the price of the Nan Gua at the counter, "1.5 kuai yi jin" they told me. I thought for a moment the possible ways of getting the things home and the benefits that it could bring. I finally decided on a medium sized one that would be easy enough to strap to my scooter and I took it in. My total price was 28 kuai and I was on my way with a bag of frozen potatoes and one Halloween decoration.
I called Jiao Jiao on the way and told her to meet me outside with her camera. It must have been a sight for the Chinese people to see a foreigner riding down the street with a massive pumpkin strapped to his scooter. Here are the pictures.
Thank goodness for all of those bungee cords I bought at Macro Mart. As we were taking the pumpkin upstairs, the elevator lady was intrigued by the size of the beast and inquired about it. Most pumpkins in China can fit into your two hands together and they are greenish. This was something very new to the girl. So, I told her that Jiao Jiao loves pumpkin so much that I cannot keep enough of the small ones in the house and therefore, I bought a big one to give her food for a few days. Of course I was speaking sarcastically, but they thought I was serious. Someone could really love pumpkin that much.
I have never been a big eater of pumpkin dishes. Before moving to Korea, I had never eaten anything other than pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving and one time I had pumpkin seeds instead of sunflower seeds at a baseball tournament when I was about 11. In Korea I learned to enjoy pumpkin soup and in China, all sorts of pumpkin dishes were available. It can actually be eaten in the same ways as potato, but I still prefer potato - it's an Idaho thing.
None the less, I decided that I wanted to save some of the meat from this massive vegetable (or is it a fruit?) and I recalled how we used to just waste tons of good pumpkin meat in order to cut a face into a plant. However, this pumpkin was not ripe when it was taken off of the vine and the meat inside was rather tough to remove. We spent a lot of time digging away with a spoon, remembering that our main purpose was to make a jack-o-lantern. Finally, we gave up after getting two bags full of pumpkin. Here are the pictures of us working.