Creating a great jack-o’-lantern can be simple

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Step 1

Sketch the design for your jack-o’-lantern before starting to cut. Use a pencil first, and once you’ve decided on the perfect look for your pumpkin trace over the pencil sketch with a marker.

Step 2

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Cut around the top of your pumpkin. Be sure to cut a notch in the top to make it easier to line up the pumpkin top later. Point the knife inward at a 45- degree angle while cutting. This will prevent lid from falling in later. Trim the pulp away from the bottom of the lid.

Step 3

Remove the seeds and pulp from the inside of the pumpkin using a spoon, ice cream scoop or your hands. The more you are able to remove, the brighter the light will shine from within. Be sure to save the pumpkin seeds for a tasty treat later.

Step 4

Use a paring knife or other pumpkin carving tool to cut along the lines drawn earlier. After you’ve cut along the sketched lines, use your fingers to push out the cut-out pieces of pumpkin. Hang on to those, and use them later as ears, eyes or a nose, depending on your design.

Step 5

Light it up. Scoop out enough of the bottom of the pumpkin to make a flat surface on which the candle can sit. You can also use artificial candles or pumpkin lights to illuminate your jack-o’-lantern. Be creative, have fun and don’t worry about being perfect.