The bishop’s cap is a type of pumpkin that is best known for its unusual shape. Learn more about the characteristics of this special vegetable in this article.
Bishop’s cap: ornamental pumpkin with flavor
The pumpkin owes its name “bishop’s cap” to its special shape: At the bottom, it is round and flat. At the top, it is joined by a smaller part that sits on top of the rest of the pumpkin like a cap. Usually, the bishop’s cap is mostly orange in color, with a yellow-green pattern running through it. Because of this, this variety has made a name for itself primarily as an ornamental pumpkin.
While most ornamental pumpkins are inedible, you can also use the bishop’s cap in cooking. It has a sweet, nutty flavor and a relatively floury texture. Only the peel and the upper part of the “cap” you can not eat. You can therefore simply peel the pumpkin and then bake, boil, steam or pan fry it.
Alternatively, you can hollow out the bishop’s cap pumpkin beforehand and cook it whole in the oven. You can use the pulp for a pumpkin soup recipe, for example, and then serve the soup decoratively in the baked pumpkin.
In addition to soups and stews, bishop’s cap is also suitable as an ingredient for salads and casseroles or as a side dish, for example in the form of baked pumpkin wedges or pumpkin puree. Spices and herbs that go particularly well with the flavor of the pumpkin variety are, for example, garlic, thyme or curry powder.
Bishop’s hat: grow pumpkin yourself
If you want to plant the bishop’s cap in your own garden, it is best to get a pre-cultivated seedling from a specialized dealer. You should then follow the instructions below:
Grow your own bishop’s hat pumpkin:
- The pumpkin needs a warm and preferably sunny location.
- The soil should be humus, nutritious, permeable and well loosened.
- From mid-May, you can plant young plants in the open. Alternatively, you can also grow the bishop’s cap from seeds. Sow them directly outdoors from May or grow them indoors from mid-April.
How to plant bishop’s caps:
- Before you plant the pumpkin plant, you should loosen the soil well and enrich it with some compost as a starting fertilizer.
- Then place the young plant first in a container with water, so that the root ball can soak up moisture.
- Then place the bishop’s cap in a sufficiently large planting hole, press the soil down again well and water the area generously.
- If you want to grow multiple squash plants, make sure there is a space of about three feet between plants.
Bishop’s Cap Care:
- The bishop’s cap is a low-maintenance squash: all you need to do is water it regularly and apply some organic fertilizer about every two weeks. Learn how you can easily make biodegradable fertilizer yourself here: Fertilizer for plants: Make it yourself, all natural.
- To prevent pests (especially slugs), you can sprinkle some coffee grounds around the plant or build a barrier of natural materials (like wood chips) around the pumpkin.
- In late summer or early fall of the first year of cultivation, you can already harvest the first ripe pumpkins.
Recipe: Stuffed bishop’s cap
A stuffed bishop’s cap with rice and vegetables from the oven is a warming and filling dish, especially in autumn and winter. When buying ingredients, look for organic quality to avoid synthetic pesticides. You can get the bishop’s cap pumpkin from September to January from European cultivation. Mushrooms, carrots and onions can also be purchased regionally during this period.
- 1Bishop’s hat
- 5 tablespoons canola oil
- salt, pepper
- 2 tsp Ras el Hanout
- 100 g whole grain rice
- 2 clove(s)of garlic
- 2 medium carrots
- 150 g mushrooms
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 150 ml vegetable broth
- Cut off the top of the bishop’s cap.
- Using a spoon, scrape out most of the flesh so that the edge of the squash is only about three inches wide at the end. Set the flesh of the bishop’s cap aside for later use.
- Coat the inside of the pumpkin with about two tablespoons of canola oil and sprinkle with a little salt and Ras el Hanout.
- Now place the hollowed out bishop’s cap pumpkin in the oven at 200 degrees Celsius top/bottom heat for about 30 minutes.
- Cook the rice according to package instructions in a little salted water. Depending on the type of rice, this will take about 20 to 30 minutes.
- Cut the onion and garlic into small cubes and fry them in a pan in the remaining canola oil.
- Cut the carrots into small cubes and add them to the other ingredients in the pan. Let the mixture cook over medium heat for about five minutes.
- Chop the mushrooms into slices and chop the pumpkin pulp a bit as well. Add both ingredients to the pan and sauté the vegetables for another five minutes.
- Now add the tomato paste and the rice and sauté everything for another three to four minutes.
- Season with salt, pepper and Ras el Hanout.
- Fill the mixture of rice, vegetables and bishop’s cap into the pumpkin and pour the vegetable broth over it. Then put the lid of the bishop’s cap back on.
- The stuffed pumpkin now goes into the oven for another 20 minutes at 200 degrees Celsius. After half the time you can remove the lid again.
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I have worked as a horticulture specialist lead gardener, garden landscaper, and of course i am a hobby gardener at home in my own garden.
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