There's nothing quite like the sight of a glowing pumpkin in a window come Halloween time. However, carving them can sometimes feel a little bit daunting - but fear not! With this simple step-by-step guide from the experts at Garsons of Esher, you'll soon be carving like a pro!
In the lead-up to Halloween, they sell an impressive 10,000 pumpkins every year at their two farm shops, located in Esher, Surrey, and Titchfield, Hampshire, so they certainly know their stuff. What is more, you can also buy special carving kits when you pick up your pumpkin.
Step one: Choose a large pumpkin, preferably one with a flat bottom so it won’t roll, and use a sharp serrated knife* to cut off the crown.
Step two: Scoop out the seeds and fibres using a large serving spoon or an ice-cream scoop – although you can use your hands – and discard or save for a recipe. Use your knife to cut away some of the flesh.
Step three: With a marker pen, draw an outline of a scary face on the pumpkin or, if you want to be really adventurous, use a stencil from one of Garsons' pumpkin-carving kits.
Step four: Use a small serrated knife from a pumpkin-carving kit to cut around your outline.
Step five: Pop a tea light inside the pumpkin, light it and replace the crown. Alternatively, a battery-powered light can provide a safe alternative and this won’t burn the inside of the pumpkin.
* Make sure to keep knives away from young children, and supervise older children who want to cut their own pumpkin.
If you want to know more, the team at Garsons of Esher will be sharing their pumpkin-carving expertise at free demonstrations during the October half-term. On Monday and Tuesday, October 23 and 24, between 10am to 2pm, a member of the team will be giving a step-by-step guide on how to carve the perfect Jack-o-lanterns. You can then pick up a pumpkin from the farm shop, which will be selling a range of sizes, or, weather permitting, choose your own from the PYO fields.