Tasty tradition: roasted pumpkin seeds

Published On: Sep 28 2011 12:10:34 PM EDT

As a kid, I don't remember roasting pumpkin seeds after our jack-o-lantern carving. Perhaps Mom and Dad were too overwhelmed with the cleanup to think about it -- or maybe one of them secretly hated pumpkin seeds.

In any case, when my husband and I carved our own pumpkins last year, he insisted we roast the seeds. I was ambivalent about it, but he had grown up with the tradition, so he took the lead.

He didn't do anything fancy, and they certainly weren't to die for, but there's something very ... Halloweeny about pumpkin seeds. I have no doubt they're now part of our annual tradition.

For those of you -- like me -- who wouldn't know how to go about roasting pumpkin seeds, here's what you do:

After carving your pumpkin, sort the seeds from the rest of the goo. You may want to rinse them, but as one viewer says, that stringy stuff contains lots of additional flavor -- so perhaps you want to keep those seeds nice and gooey until after they're roasted.

Spray a cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray and spread the seeds out.

Sprinkle generously with salt.

Bake at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for about 45 minutes or until golden brown.

If you decided not to rinse the seeds before roasting, put them into a colander to separate out any leftover pumpkin bits.

Variations:

  • Boil the seeds in salt water for 20 minutes or so before baking. A couple of viewers have said this brings out the flavor of the seed inside the shell.
  • Add seasonings or cheesy toppings to spice up the flavor. For a sweeter taste, try cinnamon and nutmeg instead of salt.

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