A Havelock North resident has burns on her face, chest and hand after a hot pumpkin exploded "like a bomb" when she picked it up out of her microwave.
Florencia Ferrari says she wants to tell her cautionary tale about the perils of microwaving the popular vegetable to prevent others from doing what she did.
On Friday she bought a small gem squash pumpkin from Countdown Hastings, and tried to cut it in half to prepare to cook a stuffed pumpkin meal in the oven.
"I tried to cut it in half, but it was too hard, the skin was too hard.
"I put it in the microwave for a little over two minutes to soften the skin."
Disaster struck when she went to take the pumpkin out.
"The pumpkin had a little hole in the top from the knife.
"I saw water bubbling in the hole. I took a thick cloth to take it out, as soon as I touched it, it exploded.
"It was like a little bomb. I still remember the noise. I am just lucky the microwave door wasn't closed."
Ferrari ended up with boiling hot exploded pumpkin all over her.
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"I had pumpkin all over me, especially my face. My right wrist and chest got blisters.
Ferrari said her three month-old baby was playing on a mat close by.
"I am just glad that he was safe."
Following the explosion Ferrari paid a visit to the chemist to get treatment for her "very, very painful" injuries and they gave her some moisturiser to prevent infection.
She was also given dressings after a visit to Hastings Health Centre and is going back every day to get them changed.
Originally from Argentina, Ferrari has been a Hawke's Bay resident for the past year and half.
For future purposes, she intends to treat every pumpkin with caution.
"People have different ways of cooking it. I suppose I wasn't doing it right."
Chef at Havelock North's Village Green Cafe Jason Karena said there was a number of different ways to cook a pumpkin but he'd never heard of anyone microwaving one before, even for a short period.
"I would never microwave a pumpkin.
"It's dry - in a microwave there's no air getting inside the pumpkin. It will want to expand."
Karena said it was like putting a giant egg it the microwave - it would eventually explode.
He recommended to prepare pumpkins for cooking, people should peel them before cutting them into smaller pieces.
He said roasting the smaller pieces at approximately 180C for 30 to 40 minutes would produce a tasty result, as would boiling and then mashing them.