Thursday, October 1, 2009

Squash seeds and Vegan MoFo

Welcome to October everyone! It's getting to be fall. And one of the best parts of fall is roasting squash seeds. Everyone loves a snack that's salty, crunchy, healthy, easy to make, and practically free.

I have wonderful memories of carving a Halloween pumpkin with my mom and my brother. We crunched on the salty pumpkin seeds while arguing about how to make the scariest jack-o-lantern.

"Pumpkin" seeds don't just come from pumpkins, though. The seeds of any winter squash can be roasted. You know those boxes of processed foods that say "20% more free!"? Well this is the real 20% more free! For just a tiny bit more work, you get a second dish from your winter squash. It's even better if you're roasting the squash because you already have the oven on.

Here's the loose recipe I used growing up. You can change the oven temperature if you have something else cooking that needs a higher temperature. Just expect the seeds to brown a bit faster.

Roasted Squash Seeds

Separate the seeds from the pulp of the squash. Don't worry if tiny bits of pulp stick to the seeds. Just be sure to remove the larger pieces. Throw the pumpkin seeds in a baking dish with sides. Drizzle a small amount of oil over the seeds. (We always used canola, but olive oil would work fine.) Sprinkle the seeds with kosher salt. (Kosher salt is extra crunchy.) Bake the seeds in a 200 degree oven until browned. This will take about 20 minutes, but keep an eye on the oven. The seeds can go from browned to burnt really quickly.

Reason number two why October is going to be a great month: Vegan MoFo III! Vegan MoFo is the Vegan Month of Foods. For the month of October, bloggers all over the world who are interested in vegan food have pledged to post, post, post. Over 300 bloggers will flood the Internet with blog posts showing glimpses of their food worlds, from tonight's dinner to inspiring new food ideas.


Hannah said...

Ugh! I've always wanted to do this! I feel like my mom used to roast seeds but she insists that never happened. Anyway, THANK YOU.

Also, seriously....the carne guisada is off the hook.

Jeni Treehugger said...

I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE roasting my own Squash Seeds - they are delicious.
Happy Mofo'ing

Chile said...

Mmm, love the squash seeds. We don't use any oil for ours. You can soak them in salt water before roasting to get the salty flavor.

Besides snacking, I also like to grind up the roasted seeds in my coffee/spice grinder, sift, and add to soup in the winter.

Bonnie said...

Awesome! I bought pumpkin seeds a few times but I never roasted any fresh ones myself. It sounds very simple though!

mollyjade said...

That's good to know about the oil, chile. Dewey has to cut down on the fat in his food, so I'm boning up on low fat cooking.

Chile said...

I cook with very little to no oil so you might want to check out the recipe index on my blogs for some ideas.

mollyjade said...

It's already in my blogroll!

Anonymous said...

I love toasted seeds. They are so good. I really like your blog. We are in Austin.

Anonymous said...

OMG i never thought of using my seeds! so very happy with this idea! yippee!!!!! more veg love snacks from my squashers. i'm in veg heaven with this idea.

kittee said...

i love roasted seeds too. i made this butternut bisque thing from a cookbook last year, and the recipe has you roast the seeds with a tiny bit of sugar. it's genius, cuz they caramelize up and get really good, especially with a tiny bit of cayenne mixed in!