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Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

November 13, 2009

by Emily

Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

While it has taken me roughly 20 years to do it, I think that I have finally overcome my fear of pumpkins.  Yes, pumpkins.  Hear me out, this is completely legitimate.  It all comes down to holiday connotations.  For example, think about when Christmas rolls around.  It’s difficult not to associate that particular time of year with the intoxicating smell of gingerbread men baking in the oven, the magical twinkling of Christmas lights, and the glorious feeling of ripping open the present you’ve been hinting at for MONTHS (yes, I know it is sort of expensive, BUT it’s so practical!) and then finding that yesssss! all your dreams have come true in the form of Tory Burch Reva flats!  Oh wait, maybe that’s just me…  No matter.  You see where I’m going with this: positive connotations.Blah!  Pumpkins.
So the problem is, I use to have ZERO warm and fuzzy feelings about pumpkins.  Up until the past couple of years, I have associated pumpkins with a terrible OMG-I-feel-am-so-awkward-in-my-ridiculous-scarecrow-costume!!! memory.  It was a hand-me-down from my brother.  ALL the other girls were some derivation of a princess.  My cheeks were only rosy because I had hives from the straw.  Totally fine.  I mean, seriously, Mom…

This happened at the formative age of 6, and resulted in the following associations: Pumpkins = Halloween = Costumes = Gah, absolutely not.

Fortunately, I have grown up a little.  I am happy to report that I am a big fan of Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Lattes, I adore Cinderella shaped pumpkins (plus regular ones, too), and I no longer get an overwhelming sense of anxiety when I see a darling little girl stifled by some unpleasant Halloween costume.  She’ll get over it.  With time.

Since I have avoided actual pumpkins for nearly two decades, I decided to confront my fear head on this year and not only make pumpkin puree, but explore the exciting pumpkin seed options.  We are enjoying two different kinds of freshly roasted pumpkins seeds and I know you will, too.

Pumpkin seeds ready for the oven.

Toasted Pumpkin Seeds: Two Ways
Adapted From:  Michael Chiarello’s Recipe – Food Network

Sea Salt
Seeds from 1 pumpkin
1 tablespoon olive oil (or melted butter)
Sea Salt, to taste

Chipotle Toasted
Seeds from 1 pumpkin
1 tablespoon olive oil (or melted butter)
1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder (or to taste)

Preheat oven to 375˚.
In a colander, rinse pumpkin seeds, separating and discarding the stringy pieces.  Pat dry on towel.
In a mixing bowl, toss the pumpkin seeds in oil and sea salt/chipotle chili powder.
Place them on a baking sheet in a single layer.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, turning the seeds half way through.  Seeds may pop resulting in a fun, new pumpkin connotation.

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