November 23, 2012 by another1bitesthecrust
The best reward for plunging your hands into a cold, slimy pumpkin to pull the goo out when making a jack-o-lantern is getting tons of seeds to roast.
While subtle, salted pumpkin seeds are nice, I decided to turn up the volume and make some Cajun flavored zingers.
Luckily, Safeway has some Cajun seasoning so I didn’t have to rummage through my spice rack to find a billion different spices to throw to together.
I’ve never made pumpkin seeds before so I was flying blind. I did a quick Google search to help me along the way…
After I was done carving my pumpkin, I spent some time separating out the seeds from the flesh and goop. You want as much of the stringy fibers removed from the seeds as possible but a few here and there won’t hurt. I ran the seeds under water in a small strainer for a long time, letting bits of pumpkin rise to the top and constantly searching the pile of seeds for bits and pieces to remove.
As it turned out, after I cleaned the seeds off, I wasn’t quite ready to roast them yet, so they sat in the strainer for a few days while my lazy butt kept procrastinating. I would stir them up a bit every day because I noticed that the ones in the middle were still damp. Turns out that very dry pumpkin seeds roast wayyy better than fresh ones. See? Procrastination isn’t always a bad thing…
While the oven is preheating to 300°F, put the pumpkin seeds in a bowl and toss with about 2TB of olive oil. Some recipes call for melted butter, I bet that’s delicious too. Then toss with whatever seasoning you want – salt only, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, etc. You can always add more seasoning after the seeds are roasted if you find that you haven’t added enough.
Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and lay the seeds out in a single layer.
Bake for about 45 minutes, stirring them around on the pan every 15 minutes.
I sprinkled them with a bit of salt as soon as they came out, it really seemed to make the flavor pop. Let them cool and enjoy! They make a seriously addicting and healthy snack.