Well, it's officially autumn here in Australia and despite my North American brain saying it should be spring, the weather truly is significantly chillier than it has been. With autumn comes cool weather crops for my garden and I am enjoying an abundance of kale and silverbeet ~ or swiss chard to my North American friends ~ and am hoping to see some cauliflower if the bugs don't get them first!
|Seeds ready for toasting in the frying pan.|
For me, autumn traditionally is a time for squash, pumpkins and pumpkin seeds. Lucky for me, Australia supplies squash all year round which they refer to as pumpkin. Did you know that you can eat the seeds from squash? Most people I know just chuck these gems in the garbage when they are preparing their squash/ pumpkin for dinner. Our family loves to toast them and our only problem is that there are never enough seeds in the pumpkin to keep up with our appetite!
The next time you scoop out a squash or pumpkin, save the seeds. Simply separate the 'guts' of the pumpkin/squash from the seeds, give the seeds a rinse and spread out on a piece of baking paper to dry a bit. Once dry, dump the seeds still in their shell in a small frying pan with about 1 teaspoon of coconut oil and toast with a pinch of salt until golden brown. Sometimes I add a pinch of homemade seasoning to finish them off.
Pumpkin seeds, especially with their shell, are an excellent source of zinc and are very high in fibre so make so make an effort to give this snack a try!
|Toasted spaghetti squash seeds.|
Pumpkin Seed or Popcorn Seasoning
- 1 1/2 Tbsps. nutritional yeast
- 1 tsp. sweet paprika
- 1/4- 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1/2 tsp. onion powder or dried onion flakes
- 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
In a mini food processor, combine all the ingredients and blend until finely ground. Store in an airtight container for up to a year.