For years it has been a Halloween tradition for my family and I to carve out our pumpkins together, and to reserve all the slimy pumpkin seeds for me to roast off to make the perfect Fall snack, Spiced Pumpkin Seeds. Adapted from Martha Stewart's Sweet and Spicy Pumpkin Seeds, these seeds have the perfect balance between sweet and savory with just a hint of spiciness. I changed Martha's recipe slightly by reducing the amount of sugar, removing the cumin, and substituting sesame oil instead of peanut. The seeds are crisp with a light coating of nutty sesame oil and caramelized sugar, generously dusted with sweet sugar, salt, savory ginger, and spicy cayenne pepper. This snack is fast, simple, and perfect to take to class or work. These Pumpkin Seeds also make great gifts. Make up a large batch and present them in festive Fall tins or gift bags to give to friends, family, or co-workers.
Note: Roasting time may vary depending on oven. Be sure to keep an eye on the seeds during roasting. If they are undercooked, the seeds will be chewy. You are aiming for a golden brown colour.
the seeds from one medium pumpkin (about 1 cup of seeds)
4 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
pinch of cayenne pepper (to taste)
1 1/2 tbsp sesame oil
1. Preheat oven to 325º. Cut open top of pumpkin and scoop out seeds. Place them in a colander and and wash well with warm water, making sure to separate any pumpkin guts that may be sticking to the seeds. Once cleaned, dry them with a towel.
2. Evenly lay seeds out on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for about 1 hour or until seeds become golden brown. Stir several times during baking. See above note on roasting.
3. In a medium bowl, combine 2 tbsp sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cayenne pepper.
4. In a medium skillet, heat sesame oil on high heat. Add the baked pumpkin seeds and remaining 2 tbsp sugar. Cook while stirring until seeds are coated in caramelized sugar.
5. Transfer caramelized seeds into bowl of spices and toss to coat. Let cool. Store in an airtight container for about 1 week.