Pumpkin or other similar squash seed can be used in this recipe. Seeds are highly underrated and under-consumed. Did you know watermelon seeds are edible? Search for recipes.
I often do a variation of this recipe with shelled seeds, but you don’t get the benefit of the fiber in the shells and it’s easier to eat a ton of the shelled seeds which have a good amount of calories and fat.
If you have made pepitas before, this is very similar. The difference is the shell and preparation.
Native Americans in this area used to eat a lot of squash seeds. They toasted and roasted them. Sometimes they ground them to make a mush. They found eating the shells helped to get rid of internal parasites and worms due to the internal cleansing ability of the shells. It’s nice to know pumpkins can do more than scare trick-or-treaters away!
This recipe is also good for taking to parties or having with beer. Whenever I make pumpkins seeds this way, they do not stay around for long.
I am not a professional cook or dietitian, so this recipe is passed along in more of a “back fence” type of way with general measurements.
- Pumpkin seeds (remove as much of the stringy squash as you can – I like to leave small bits of it)
- Chiltepines or red pepper flakes
Spread seeds on a cookie sheet that is either lined with parchment/wax paper or cooking spray. Put it into a 250-300-degree oven and check every 10 minutes and stir a little to help them cook more evenly. It could take anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour depending on your oven and size of seeds. Let them get a little toasted and crispy. They should be edible to your personal taste.
Next get a pan and heat it over medium to high heat. I most often use a cast-iron pan or griddle but most pans should work. I put a little butter – just enough to keep the seeds from sticking. Not a lot.
Throw in the seeds and add salt, the chiltepines (or pepper flakes) and minced or pressed garlic. These are all to taste. In general for a cup of seeds, I use about 1/2 tsp salt, 1-2 crushed chiltepines, and 1-2 garlic cloves. I love garlic and don’t mind smelling like garlic. You might want to start with less because the garlic taste can get strong. Keep stirring and don’t let the seeds burn.
When they are hot, sprinkle the seeds with a pinch of sugar and then take them off the heat. Squirt a little lime juice over the seeds and stir. Start with a small amount and add more to taste without “washing” the other ingredients off. Enjoy!
Next time you cook up those pumpkins seeds, save some to try out this recipe and let me know how it went.