Thursday, 3 November 2011

Sweet and Spicy Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

I thought I'd begin with this article by the BBC. I'm appalled. "Researchers estimated that more than 30,000 lives a year would be saved if everyone in the UK followed dietary guidelines on fat, salt, fibre, and fruit and vegetables." Food to me is meant to be one of those simple joys of life, and the idea of any serious health issues resulting from the food you eat frustrates me. This isn't a health food blog where I encourage you to use skimmed milk, butter substitutes and so forth. This is a food blog of healthy everyday meals with a few indulgences every now and then. I'd like to encourage a healthy lifestyle. Again, "healthy" doesn't mean no butter or cream. "Healthy" meaning butter and cream in moderation. "Healthy" meaning eclairs and croissants are okay as long as you don't eat it with every meal. And "healthy" meaning deep fried pizzas and butter should be limited to perhaps once a year (difference between the two is that the deep fried pizzas and butter are just utter butchery of food, and thus not worth any potential health risk/weight gain).
Ok, now that I've got that off my chest I can start with these pumpkin seeds.

I understand that it's 3 days after Halloween but I hope you haven't binned the pumpkin seeds from your pumpkins yet. They make great snacks and they're just so good for you. They're high in zinc, magnesium, iron, and studies have shown that it may help prevent prostate cancer. Hence it's much better than snacking on chocolate when you're studying.

Anyway, my much-feared test is in 2 and a half hours and I'm trying to convince myself that it's too late to do any last minute studying, so I thought I'd do a new post. The usual roasted pumpkin seeds you get are mostly savory and I have a sweet tooth so I thought I'd try roasting them with some sugar and spices. Plus the sugar just gives me that extra kick as a study snack.

It's really easy to make, the only thing was cleaning the pumpkin seeds, that was a bit of a pain. Basically try to discard all the stringy mushy bit of the pumpkin flesh and then pat the seeds dry. Thus the prep time for this must've been about 15 minutes.

Prep time: 15 min Cook time: 40 min Serves: 2 students in the library Suitable for: when studying

1 cup pumpkin seeds (cleaned)
2 tbsp Brown sugar
2 tsp ground cardamom
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tbsp melted butter

Toss the pumpkin seeds in melted butter, not too much, just enough to kind of coat them, and add your spices and sugar. Spread evenly on a baking tray and bake in a pre-heated oven of 180C. Bake for about 40 minutes or until browned but not burnt. Make sure you toss them around every 5-10 minutes so nothing burns.

-If you want a savory version then coat the seeds in olive oil, salt and pepper. Add some spices if you want, some paprika or garam masala, whatever you fancy :)

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