Keelings’ Pumpkins are the ideal starting point for creating the ultimate ‘Jack O Lantern’. Here are Keelings’ top tips to consider when carving out the ghastly ghoul you will place on your doorstep on all Hallows Eve. Firstly, you will need to hollow out your chosen pumpkin. Simply cut a hole in the top of the pumpkin (where the stalk is), and scoop out the flesh, pulp and seeds. Once this is done you have your canvas for creating the perfect lantern. You can now transfer your scary design onto the surface of the pumpkin. Do so by drawing the outline of your design onto a piece of tracing paper or simply a sheet of parchment paper will do the same job. Place your design onto the pumpkin securing it with sellotape, and draw it onto the skin of the pumpkin with a sharp knife (be sure there is an adult around to help), once this is done remove your template and carve along the lines you have made. You should now have your pumpkin perfectly carved.
Tips for preserving your lantern…..
Now that you have you have carved out your perfect lantern you will want it to last as long as possible. Once your pumpkin is carved it no longer has its skin to act as a protector against various organisms in the environment. Oxygen in the air will break down the skin of the pumpkin and cause dehydration.To prevent this, you will need to sterilize the pumpkin’s carved surface to kill fungi, mould, bacteria and bugs, this will seal the surface to prevent drying. Just follow these simple steps:
Remove the dirt from your pumpkin: wipe the exterior surface of the pumpkin clean using a damp cloth.
Make a bleach based solution with one tablespoon of bleach and 2 pints of water, and put it into a spray bottle.
Spray the pumpkin inside and on all the cut areas of the surface. This will kill the bacteria that causes drying.
Let the mixture penetrate and dry for about 20 minutes.
Rub all of the carved surfaces of the pumpkin with petroleum jelly, this will keep out new bacteria.
Wipe away excess petroleum jelly with tissue paper.
Try to keep it as cool as possible and you will get at least a week’s enjoyment out of it.
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