Scary Pumpkins, Tasty Seeds ~ The Garden of Eating - a sinfully good blog about food

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Scary Pumpkins, Tasty Seeds

Yesterday afternoon, we went over to our neighbors' backyard to carve pumpkins with them and their four adorable kids (two of which are too young to carve anything so they just toddled around entertaining us with their winning smiles.) My pumpkin was inspired by last week's excellent New Yorker cover - after all, what could be scarier than Dick Cheney?
Photo of the cover of the October 29, 2007 issue of The New Yorker, courtesy of The New Yorker.Mine did not turn out quite as well as I'd hoped - more ornery owl than Vice President but it's still pretty scary-looking.

My version of the Dick Cheney Jack-O-LanternIn the process of creating our jack-o-lanterns, we collected a heaping pile of pumpkin seeds. We roasted them when we got home last night and have been snacking on them all day.

Our bowl of pumpkin seeds.
According to Martha, the best way to roast squash seeds is to:

1. Place in a colander and rinse thoroughly, removing any clinging pulp with your fingers.

2. Lay the wet seeds on a dry dishtowel or paper towels to dry before roasting.

3. Toss with a few teaspoons (or tablespoons, depending on how many seeds you have - you want enough oil to coat all the seeds lightly) of olive or canola oil and spread in a single layer on a thick baking sheet.

4. Salt the seeds to taste.

5. Bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown, checking often for doneness since the seeds will roast quickly, then remove sheet from oven and allow to cool completely

6. Store in an airtight container. Refrigerate if you don't eat them within the first few days.

Optional Flavorings

If you prefer your seeds a bit more exciting, you can use other spices to flavor them.
  • One option is adding some ground rosemary to the olive oil and salt.
  • Another spicier option is to use some ground chipotle or ancho chiles, cumin and black pepper.
  • Or, if you have a sweet tooth, use a few tablespoons of melted butter in place of the oil, and coat the seeds with brown sugar, cinammon, nutmeg and ginger.


Neil said...

An impressive rendition! I'm scared. Neil

Cary said...

So glad you are enjoying them. I've followed Joy of Cooking 1970s version for decades which omits oil and drying on paper towels. Just rinse, salt, mix, drop on cookie sheet and roast, carefully checking often so as not to burn. Aren't they terrific! Wait all year for fresh pumpkin seeds! Wahoo!!! :)