This special stew is the meal our two kids look forward to each fall because we only get to enjoy it when the fresh pumpkins come out of the garden. The stew is cooked and served right in the pumpkin shell. A true taste of autumn, it also makes a pretty presentation at a potluck. —Donna Mosher, Augusta, Montana
3 large potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
4 medium carrots, sliced
1 large green pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons beef bouillon granules
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 pumpkin (10 to 12 pounds)
In a Dutch oven, brown meat in 2 tablespoons oil. Add water, potatoes, carrots, green pepper, garlic, onion, salt and pepper. Cover and simmer for 2 hours. Stir in bouillon and tomatoes. Wash pumpkin; cut a 6 to 8 in. circle around top stem. Remove top and set aside; discard seeds and loosen fibers from inside.
Place pumpkin in a shallow sturdy baking pan. Spoon stew into pumpkin and replace top. Brush outside of pumpkin with remaining oil. Bake at 325° for 2 hours or just until the pumpkin is tender (do not overbake). Serve stew from pumpkin, scooping out a little pumpkin with each serving.