I have carved a couple of pumpkins with Joseph in the past and given sweets to the odd trick or treater and that's about as far as it goes!
This year I was asked if I would carve a different style of pumpkin.
A loving pumpkin of hope and not a scary one!
I jumped at the chance!
I have carved a heart into our pumpkin this year as a lantern of hope to remember all of the children around the world who live in fear! Children here is the UK are getting ready to enjoy a fun night of scares and fears however there are too many children who live in real fear each and every day!
I was shocked to read that almost 40,000 girls (not women!) are forced into a marriage that they are afraid of and certainly no where near ready for.
This is Sylvia's story or fear, worry and hope:
Visit http://www.worldvision.org.uk/get-involved/night-hope to see how you too can get involved in helping.
Each child should be free from fear!
Here is our lantern of hope. We will be proudly displaying this in our window to show that we want to turn a night of fear into a night of hope.
500g lean stewing beef
1 large red onion
Insides of 1 pumpkin
1 - Place the stewing steak in the slow cooker
2 - Chop all of the vegetables and add to the meat
3 - Mix together
4 - Place the slow cooker on a high heat for 1 hour
5 - After an hour add about 1 pint of boiled water and a beef stock cube, black pepper and sage. Turn the slow cooker to a low heat and leave for about 4 hours
6 - Before serving sprinkle a few gravy granules into the stew to thicken up the juices. Give the stew a good glug of Worcester sauce for a kick of flavour and serve
This meal is such a versatile stew and you will have plenty left for a meal the following day.
I served our stew with some sage coated roasted sweet potatoes but it is also great with good old mashed potatoes or and a large Yorkshire pudding.
Tonight I will be using left overs to make either a pie or a cottage pie style meal topping the stew with mash and a covering of grated cheese before grilling!
However you serve, it is delicious!
You can even replace some of the vegetables with others that are in season or what you have to hand that is the beauty of this meal.