It’s the end of October and I’ve been enjoying everything seasonally pumpkin lately: beer, baked goods, grain and veggie dishes, and seeds!
Last week there was a beautiful (and somewhat intimidating) Galeux d’Eysines Pumpkin on my kitchen counter. I researched Galeux d’Eysines, a French heirloom variety meaning ’embroidered with warts’, because I thought it was safe to eat, but had to know why it looks so strange. There’s actually a simple explanation for the squash’s exterior: as the pumpkin matures, the sugar from inside slightly seeps out, forming “peanut shell-looking” growths. This happens when the outside transforms from green to light-orange. During the change in color, I’ve heard you can make small scrapes on the outside and guide where the growths develop. Maybe I can convince my parents to plant some and I’ll let you know next year if it works.
So they look strange, but the Galeux d’Eysines smells so sweet when you open it that you’ll want to find them every autumn.
The giant pumpkin was surprisingly easy to cut, but after processing the entire 15 pounds, all I wanted was to watch Jeopardy and have a glass of wine, so I separated out the seeds and tossed all of the stringy-covered seeds into a glass bowl in the fridge.
Feeling refreshed and more creative the next day, I soaked the seeds in warm water, cleaned them, and put together this tasty recipe. Roasting seeds is an easy way to use as much of a pumpkin as you can. They’re easy to make, great as a quick snack, and are nutritious: they contain manganese, magnesium, and phosphorus. I’ve also heard they may be anti-inflammatory, which is helpful for people who have arthritis.
Sweet & Salty Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
- Cleaned pumpkin seeds (can be from any squash)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 t sugar
- ½ t fresh grated nutmeg
- ½ t cinnamon
- ¼ t cayenne pepper
Preheat oven to 300F (or if you’re baking something, just use that temperature & adjust cooking time).
Spread out seeds on a lightly greased baking sheet. The seasoning will stick best if they’re still wet from when you cleaned them.
Mix together salt, sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper. Evenly sprinkle over seeds.
Put baking sheet in oven for 15 minutes. Remove, use a spatula to mix up the seeds, unsticking as necessary, and spread out seeds again. Put back in oven for 10 minutes or until they begin to brown. Remove seeds from pan and enjoy hot, or cool them and store in a sealed container.