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October 29, 2013

How To: Roasting Pumpkin Seeds

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PunkinSeeds5 My family took the opportunity to have a Pumpkin Carving Party this weekend and I have to give props to Holly Fowler and Mary Crafts-Homer for the inspiration!  (Our fancy, finished pumpkins are pictured above.)  We had a blast and I hope you all were inspired to have some spooktacular fun as well, but if pumpkin carving is still in your future, I wanted to share another idea - Roasted Pumpkin Seeds!  Yum!  We at Culinary Crafts LOVE roasted pumpkin seeds and one of our signature autumn offerings - The Butternut Squash Soup with Cider Cream and Roasted Pumpkin Seeds - wouldn't be complete without the nutty goodness of these gems.  Plus, they are SO easy to make, I just couldn't resist!  Check it out! PunkinSeeds First, clean the pumpkin.  I find it easiest to have a separate bowl for the seeds and then a bucket or bin for the "guts".  I like to get the seeds as separate from the flesh as possible - and this extra step will make the cleaning step a bit easier. PunkinSeeds2 Next, you can do this step one of two ways.  You can lay the seeds out on newspaper in a thin layer to dry overnight and the fruit bits that are still attached will dry up and fall way by the morning, ready for the roasting.  We wanted to cook ours that evening, so we put the seeds in a water bath on one side of the sink to rinse and clean the seeds and put the cleaned seeds in a bowl.  This method takes a little bit of time, depending on how many seeds you have, but its not too bad.  Also, if you let them dry overnight, the finished result tends to be a bit cruchier (in my opinion), so that's also a personal preference. PunkinSeeds3 Next, take the cleaned seeds and dry them slightly by sandwiching them between a dish towel.  Then, put them in a small bowl with oil or butter and your seasonings.  We ended up making 2 varieties - Salt & Pepper and Cinnamon Sugar.  For the Salt & Pepper version, add olive oil (enough to lightly coat the seeds), salt, and pepper to taste - then toss the seeds so they are evenly coated.  For the Cinnamon Sugar variety, add melted butter (again, enough to lightly coat the seeds), cinnamon, and brown sugar to taste.  Toss the seeds until evenly coated.  Then spread each batch on a cookie pan in a thin, even layer (you may want to spray the Cinnamon Sugar pan with a bit of cooking spray so the seeds don't stick). PunkinSeeds4 Next, pop the seeds in the oven, heated to 300˚ F, for about 45 minutes.  When they are done, they will be a nice golden brown color.  Let them cool and then enjoy!  And although we made these 2 varieties, that doesn't mean the possibilities end there!  Chili Lime, Dill, Mexican Chocolate...  There are SO many ways to get creative!  Plus these are a great snack or they are a fabulous garnish for soups and salads!  Happy roasting everyone! Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

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