I was so excited last night when my daughter decided it was time to carve a pumpkin. It was time to partake in another wonderful fall tradition. Roasting pumpkin seed. I can remember as a child waiting with great anticipation for my older sister to get the pumpkins ready to roast. I just couldn’t wait for them to be done. They smelt so good, and it had been a whole year since we had previously had this treat from nature. As an adult with grown children of my own I still can’t wait for the evening when I start roasting the seeds.
Well, last night was that night- YIPPY!
If you have never tasted roasted pumpkins seeds, you don’t know what you are missing.
First find yourself a pumpkin and a willing participant to cut and hollow out the guts. Collect the seeds in a separate bowl than the one you put the flesh into. This will make it easier to clean the seeds. I found a fantastic and super easy way to wash your newly harvested pumpkin seed. Just throw them in your salad spinner with a little water. BEWARE do not use too much water or when you pull that string your feet are going to get soaking wet. (Lesson learned) Spin your seeds around and around and then dump out the dirty water. It will usually be orange and a little pulpy looking. Repeat this process as many times as you feel necessary. Last night it was about 3 times but still way faster and easier than using a strainer and picking all the little guts out.
Next just lay the cleaned pumpkin seed on a fresh tea-towel on your kitchen countertop. Let them air dry for a little while. (Maybe 1/2 hour). Now for the roasting part. There are two different ways to do this process. You can either warm up the house by turning on your oven and doing it the traditional/old-fashioned way or speed things up and just use a stove-top frying pan. I usually do the later but last night I was feeling full of tradition and turned on the oven. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper for easier clean up and just lay the seed down in a single layer. This way the seeds will roast more evenly.
Next add a few dollops of butter or margarine whichever you prefer and sprinkle with your choice of seasonings. You can just use salt if you like something with a more natural favour or jazz it up by adding a little sprinkle of onion salt and/or garlic salt. I like to use both onion and garlic and do prefer the salt version over a powder version. The salt is more coarse where as the powder just tends to be too powerful because it is so tiny of a partical and you tend to over-use it just because you can’t really see how much you are putting on.
Roast in the oven at 250 degrees for 20-30 minutes. This time really depend on your oven and how much butter you use. They tend to brown up pretty fast once they get started. Alternately, if you are cooking your seeds in a frying pan, I find if you add a little extra butter to the pan once they had been on for a few minutes it tend to quickly speed up the browning process and almost deglaze the pan of the spices all at once. REMEMBER to flip and turn the seeds often so they don’t burn. That is it. Once your seeds are nicely browned just remove them from the oven and place in a serving bowl. Enjoy and Happy Halloween Everyone!
Left overs can quickly be re-heated in frying pan. Oh So Yummy!
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