Slow-Roasted Pumpkin Seeds – My Mother’s Recipe
While this recipe won’t bring back the childhood fun of carving pumpkins with my three sisters on the front lawn surrounded by golden and red fall foliage, carving pumpkins and roasting the seeds is a joy at any time of life, and is a tradition to teach to one’s own children. My sisters and I would love the tradition, and a big part of the pleasure of making jack-o’-lanterns was returning to a warm kitchen to help my mother roast the pumpkin seeds and then, of course, eating them warm from the oven.
All this recipe requires is fresh, washed pumpkin seeds, a little salt and butter. The result is a nutty, zinc-rich snack that is chewy and mellow. She would then roast them in the oven until they were golden brown, filling the house with their rich, nutty aroma. I’ve never been able to make them as perfectly as she did, but this is her recipe:
Slow-Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
pumpkin seeds from 1 or more pumpkins
1 tablespoon high quality butter (organic preferred)
Wash the pumpkin seeds to remove all the pulp, and place in a bowl. Melt the butter in a pan and then pour, bit by bit, into the nuts, tossing while you go. They key is not to use too much butter, but just enough to lightly coat the seeds. Smaller pumpkins may require less than 1 tablespoon of butter, larger ones more. Add salt. Preheat the oven to 250F; spread the seeds out over a baking pan and bake, turning occasionally, until crisp and lightly golden browned. Overcooking causes the nuts to toughen and lose flavor.
By Annie B. Bond, the best-selling and award-winning author of five healthy/green living books, including Better Basics for the Home (Three Rivers Press, 1999), Home Enlightenment, Clean & Green (1990), and most recently True Food (National Geographic, 2010 and winner of Gourmand Awards Best Health and Nutrition Cookbook in the World). She has authored literally thousands of articles and was named “the foremost expert on green living” by Body & Soul magazine (2009).