roasted pumpkin seeds (recipe)

Happy Halloween!!

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How talented is my dad? Such perfect pumpkins!

It’s officially the start of the busy holiday season! Thanksgiving is going to be here before we know it and then Christmas is right around the corner.  It’s the same thing craziness every year, but these next few months is my favorite time of the year.  I love the anticipation of the holiday season (and the fact that holidays are pretty much centered around great food)

Today I’m going to share with you one of my favorite ways to use those pesky pumpkin guts! It’s a messy job, but the finished product is a perfect crunchy snack.

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds (adapted from Oh She Glows)

First, start out with a big ol’ pumpkin. The bigger the better. I used the seeds from both the pumpkins in the picture above and the smaller one actually had a bigger percentage of seeds, but I wasn’t in the mood to seed 10 small frys. Your best bet is to grab a huge pumpkin and hope for the best!

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Grab a very sharp knife and carefully cut off the top. After that it’s as simple as grabbing all the guts out and putting it all into a giant bowl.  Now comes the fun part…the sorting! Do your best to separate the seeds from the rest of the goop, and you’ll eventually be left with this:

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When you’re left with just the seeds, rinse them VERY well until they’re almost totally clean of any leftover pumpkin. Lay on a paper towel to dry.

Once you have the seeds all ready to go, fill a medium pot with water, add a few shakes of salt, and pour in the seeds.

ImageBring the water to a boil.  Once it’s bubbling, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes. Drain.

Lay the seeds once again on a paper towel and dab them until they’re dry.

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Once the seeds are dry, lay them on a cookie sheet so they are all spread out in one layer. A little overlapping is fine.

Drizzle the seeds with olive oil.  Rub the oil into the seeds and stir them around so it gets evenly distributed.  Finally, sprinkle with sea salt (or table salt, which I think actually works better for this.  The sea salt didn’t stick very well for my batch). Remember, don’t add too much salt–just a few shakes at first.  You can always add more as you taste test, but nothing’s worse than realizing your snack is waaay too salty and you can’t turn back.

ImagePut the seeds in a 325 degree oven for 20 minutes, taking out halfway through to stir.  You’ll probably hear some popping while it’s in the oven–that’s nothing to worry about. When you take them out taste test a few and see if you need to add more salt.

ImageI’ve heard of people adding lots of different spices to their pumpkin seeds: garlic powder, Cajun seasoning, cinnamon and sugar, etc. The best part of pumpkin seeds is they are so versatile so you can make them into whatever kind of tasty snack you choose!

Pour into a cute little dish and serve alongside some candy corn for a treat. This is a great snack to have on hand while you’re handing out candy to all the little ghouls and goblins coming by.  It’s also a really healthy alternative to constantly reaching into the candy bowl.  Even if you alternate candy-seeds-candy-seeds you’re still upping your omega-3 fats, antioxidants and vitamin E and lowering your intake of high fructose corn syrup, Red 3, and Yellow 5. Definitely not a bad thing!

ImageHave a great holiday!

Question:

  • Anyone dressing up today for Halloween?

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