Last week my son’s preschool took a field trip to a local pumpkin patch, and he brought home a small sugar pumpkin. Over the weekend, we decided to make pumpkin pie and roasted pumpkin seeds. With Aaron as my sous chef, we filled the kitchen with wonderful scents of baked pumpkin. He enjoyed scooping out the seeds, but was a little weirded out by the stringy pumpkin innards. Cooking with a child is a lot messier and slower, but I love having him experience the wonders of learning about food, preparing meals, and enjoying the fruit of one’s labor.
We toasted the seeds with some butter and salt. Some people take the time to crack the shell, and then eat the seed inside. In my opinion, that is way too much work. Just pop the entire seed in your mouth, and crunch away. It makes a great afternoon snack while baking pie and watching college football.
Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
2-3 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (plus more, to taste)
Cut open the pumpkin by cutting a circle around the stem end, and pulling off the top. Slice pumpkin in half. Use a metal spoon to scrape the insides of the pumpkin halves, and scoop out the seeds and strings. Rinse the pumpkin seeds in a colander under running water, using your fingers to get all the strings and pulp off. Let seeds drain for about 30 minutes. Spread seeds onto a baking pan, and bake at 150 degrees for 10-20 minutes (stirring once in a while), until completely dry. Remove from oven, and increase oven to 275 degrees. Drizzle butter evenly over the seeds. Sprinkle salt onto seeds. Bake for 10-20 minutes until evenly browned, stirring every 5 minutes so they don’t burn. Remove from oven, and let the seeds cool completely before eating.