To see "The Grim Adventures of "PEPPER" the pumpkin",
"Pumpkin Carving Tips": or,
I noticed one day that sweet Red Peppers, when cut a certain way, resemble giant, exaggerated tongues.
Look for a pumpkin with character. Personally, I think that the gnarly, mis-shapen, misfit of the pumpkin patch, make the best jack-o-lantern characters. Unfortunately, this sickeningly cute example pumpkin came from the grocery store, from a pile of sickeningly cute pumpkin clones. (We don't go to the "real" pumpkin patch until next weekend.)
OK, first I sketch a face on the pumpkin with a permanent Sharpie marker. I like carving big faces which make good use of the available space. This guy is going to have a huge toothy grin. I draw the teeth according to the natural creases in the pumpkin's surface. The spaces between the teeth are located at each natural indentation.
Now, using the ribbon loop, I begin digging out the deepest details of the mouth and teeth with the most narrow ribbon loop. Once the spaces between the teeth are complete, I use a wider ribbon loop to carefully scrape away the skin.
I found a nice red pepper. One which had deep ridges, and was wide and flat (although it is very easy to "custom fit" almost any pepper to suit our purposes).
Then I inserted the "tongue between the teeth, and secured it with a couple of toothpicks, which go through the pepper tab, and into the pumpkin meat.
This pumpkin should last much longer than a hollowed out jack-o-lantern, but, if I choose, I could still hollow out this guy, insert a candle, and have a grim, grinning gourd on my porch, to scare away the evil spirits! (Don't paint the teeth and eyes with white acrylic, if you want the face to glow with a candle).
The red pepper will not fair as well. After two or three days, it will get a little limp and wrinkled. So either wait to create the tongue until it is closer to the time you want to display it, or keep the tongue in the fridge when it is not needed for display. One more option is to create a few tongues, which you can replace periodically.
November 4, 2006
Pepper's British Cousin
Debby, from London, sent me this photo of "Pepperkin", her version of Pepper. I love it!
Let's see what the weather in England does to him!
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