So, you've carefully cut out 2 eyes, a nose, and a mouth. Your jack-o-lantern is looking pretty cute - that is until the next day when it starts to rot onto your front steps.
I always hate to throw out a perfectly good pumpkin - even if it's just into the compost pile.
Several years back I came up with a solution.
As you can see, my little preschool class is pretty good at making jack-o-lanterns.
After we carved our little snaggle-toothed friend, I toted him home to cook him and eat him (Ewww...)
Then, I cut each half into even portions.
If you make your jack-o-lantern to hold a candle, you'll have already scooped out the goop and seeds. If any goop is left after cutting it open just scrape across the surface with a knife and it will come clean. Hang onto your seeds. I'll explain how to roast them later.
Cover with foil and bake in a 350 degree oven for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Every pumpkin is different, so check on it after an hour to see when it is done. You want to be able to smoosh it with a fork.
Let it cool completely. I let mine cool overnight and it did fine. Then, carefully slide a knife between the soft pulp and the rind. The pulp will come off easily. If you want to get every little bit you can scrape a large spatula across the rind and more will come off.
Toss the pulp into a blender or food processor. Blend until no chunks remain. If you cooked it thoroughly, it will only take 5 seconds.
Measure out your pulp into 2 cup or 1 cup portions, depending on what kind of recipes you'll be using.
I freeze my pumpkin pulp in 2 cup measurements in ziploc bags.
We like these as a yummy snack.