A gourd-like squash of Cucurbitaceae family, loosely related to the bitter gourd, among other gourds. Pumpkins are typically encased in a bright orange or yellow shell that is thick and creased. Cut open, they reveal a soft orange flesh whose texture is comparable to the sweet potato. It is symbolic of American traditions such as Halloween and Thanksgiving, during which they are carved into faces and decorations. Pumpkins are incredibly versatile, and can be cooked in almost any imaginable way without much of the gourd left to waste.