Halloween is slowly creeping up on us, so now's the perfect time to think about how to carve your pumpkin on 31st October. Take a sneaky peek at these top tips below to make sure your Jack O’lantern is the talk of the graveyard this year.
We’ve all been there. Scrolling through endless pumpkin pictures with a pang of envy at every work of art our friends have sculpted for Halloween parties and doorstep displays. Fear not - thanks to Morrisons’ very own carving expert, our 10 ‘top tricks’ and easy-to-use templates, yours could be up there with the best of them this year...ready to scare the competition witless.
You're not alone. Two thirds of the parents we asked confessed to being spooked by the challenge.
Get ready to make your best ‘fright light’ yet - try our top pumpkin carving tips below:
1. CHOOSE A PUMPKIN WITH A GOOD STEM
A thick stem means a heavy pumpkin, which is better for carving.
2. DON’T BE SCARED OF A FREAKY-SHAPED PUMPKIN
For something extra scary, try our huge Rambo pumpkins or large Ghost/Orange pumpkins. If your little monsters want to draw on faces with marker pens – try a small Gourd.
3. PICK THE RIGHT TOOLS
Draw a design with marker pen, buy a reliable pumpkin carving kit or use a range of kitchen utensils – such as a knife (under adult supervision), cocktail sticks and an ice cream scoop.
4. USE A TERRIFYING TEMPLATE
The easiest way to carve a masterpiece is to download a template which can then be pinned or taped to the fruit. We’ve dusted the cobwebs off our own pumpkin carving ideas, so you can choose a fun pumpkin template here.
5. TIME IT RIGHT
Carve your pumpkin on the day you want to display it – they normally begin to collapse and start oozing unpleasantness within 48 hours.
6. LANCE THE LID
Draw a circle for a lid, 5cm from the stem. Push your carving tool through the skin and start drawing the knife back and forth in a sawing motion, cutting at a slight angle.
7. SPILL OUT ITS INSIDES
Gouge out the pumpkin’s guts using an ice cream or pumpkin scoop or large spoon. Scrape the innards clean so that light will shine through. Don’t throw it all away though - dig out your cauldron and make a warming pumpkin soup for Halloween supper instead.
8. PREPARE THE PATTERN
Using a template, prick your design onto the pumpkin with a cocktail stick, then dab talcum powder over it to make the design stand out. If you’re a Pumpkin Picasso, Just use a marker pen freehand.
9. CARVE CAREFULLY
Cut out your design along the marker pen lines / cocktail stick pricks using a pumpkin carver, drawing it back and forth (as above, under adult supervision).
10. USE AN LED LIGHT
Don’t use a naked flame, which can be a fire hazard and should never be left unattended. Instead, pop an LED tea light into your pumpkin.