Introduction: Giant Crab, With Snack

About: Warthog-faced buffoon.

A giant dungeness crab, with a snack.

The hand is life-sized, but I sure hope the crab isn’t.

Step 1: Body

I used an Atlantic giant for the body and a Long of Naples for the legs, but a wide variety of pumpkins and gourds would work just as well.

The pumpkin I used for the crab’s body was a bit too spherical for a plausible crabbish profile, so I hacked some altitude off the bottom. I ended up using that chunk later... for the snack.

I hacked a bit off of the sides to get a more that trapezoidal look for the carapace.

Step 2: Face

I recommend doing an image search for “crab faces,” for reference and for subject matter for your nightmares.

I dug a seam down the sides and added a few simple cuts, rounded off to make the face.

Step 3: Eyes

Using a small part of the cut-off piece from the body, I whittled some eye stalks, plugged in some bamboo skewers, and smooshed them into place.

Step 4: Claws

The Finest Pumpkin Vending Establishment on the North Coast ( grew a bunch of these awesome “Long of Naples” squash this year: they look like monstrous zucchini but carve like a bright orange cylindrical pumpkin: The one I used was almost three feet long! First, I chopped it in half.

These squash are usually almost solid except for where they widen at their base, which is where their seeds live. I chopped that bottom chunk in half, and drew some big crab claws.

After whittling away the excess and rounding off all the shapes, I was left with two nice big deadly pincers.

Note: predictably, the girl in the photograph lost a finger. But we were able to recover it in time, and thanks to some talented surgeons, she is expected to make a full recovery.

Step 5: Legs

For the rest of the legs, I sliced the top half of the squash into eight sections, one for each leg.

I repeated the whittling process eight times, making sure each left matched each right, and making each pair smaller so the back legs were smallest.

Note: a round pumpkin with sufficiently thick walls (like another Atlantic Giant) would work great for crab legs too, providing some curvature that I didn’t get with this squash. Maybe I’ll try that next year.

I arranged the legs under the body.

Step 6: Snack

For grossness, I carved a human hand out of the rest of the waste piece I had cut from the body. I used my own left hand as a model, because I’ve found that acquiring an actual severed human hand is just not worth the hassle.

Disturbingly, the hand fit snugly in the claw.

Step 7: Done

I’m not sure if the hand represents the end of a large meal, or a prize

won from a careless fisherman, but I’d rather not ask.

Pumpkin Challenge

Participated in the
Pumpkin Challenge