A Gruesome and Pulpy End to 7 Innocent Pumpkins
Last night we carved pumpkins. Cause of course today is Halloween! (I know, we're a bit behind in a lot of things.
Along with our stick-on caribou-kit, we had traceable stencils and a variety of fiendish, plastic sharp things to massacre our orange victims with. Mira helped mostly by squishing her fingers in the seeds and pulp and providing endless commentary and direction. (Good thing she knows how everything works and can let us know what we're all doing wrong.) She did, however, diligently create her masterpiece by drawing on her pumpkin with a Sharpie.
We finished our pulpfest by spending a few hours picking out all the seeds and carving up the remainders into pumpkin soup, (later to be made into pies.) Mmmmm, arrgh..rgggh, pies.
See all of our efforts in the pumpkin carving gallery.
The seeds turned out delicious, (unlike last year when I forgot about them and was left with a charred pile of coal.) Here's my quick recipe:
- Remove seeds from pumpkins. Although you could probably just throw the whole pumpkin in the roaster, the result I'm sure would be less than satisfactory.
- Separate the seeds from the goo. This is a highly entertaining activity that results in a sticky smelly mess, orange fingers and one Mira with seeds stuck everywhere on her. (She took great delight in squishing seeds and goo between her fingers and then flinging the remains around the kitchen.)
- Wash the seeds. Unless you enjoy residual pumkin gut goo as added flavor, the better you do here, the better the next step will work and the better the seeds will taste in the end. Thanks much to Jen for her meticulous microscopic removal of all traces of orange goo.
- Dry the seeds. In order for the oil to adhere to the seed hulls, the seeds must be dry. (Recall how oil and water don't mix?) We used a hairdryer for this with much success. Just be sure to set it on low so you don't end up with seeds blown everywhere. This was Jen's idea and worked much better than my paper-towelling efforts.
- Oil and spice the seeds. The fun part! I like extra virgin olive oil. The idea is to have each seed be moistened with the oil. I used about a 1/3 cup for 4 cups of seeds. Toss these on a cookie sheet with edges along with your favorite seasoning. Here we used Lawry Salt, but soy sauce, cajun seasoning or your special mix would be equally tasty I'm sure.
- Roast at 400° for about half an hour. As previously mentioned, don't forget that they're in there. These seeds need a lot of attention. I continuously stirred the seeds to ensure they dried without burning and had an even coating of spices. Roast until they're nice and golden - like in the picture.
- Let cool and munch. This of course is what all the effort is for. Some like to pick at the seeds like a bird and try to remove the seed from the hull, but I find crunching the whole enchilada is just as nice and a whole lot more efficient.