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October 31, 2013 / Heather

Pumpkin seeds are evil. Here’s why

Pumpkin day, pumpkin night, pumpkins bring on lots of fright… Especially if you’re trying to shell the seeds.

My mom and Kim trying to shell seeds.

My mom and Kim trying to shell seeds.

 

This is what went through my head a few days ago. See, on the 20th of October there was a group of us that dealt with pumpkins.

As in Picking up pumpkins, cutting a hole, scooping out the “guts”, stencling a design on (free hand), thinning out the pumpkin inside, carving the pumpkin, making sure the light shines through, and thinning more if the pumpkin wasn’t thin enough to begin with.

SO!

Catfish and I were at my parents house (where I live) and we woke up Sunday morning and my folks were gone. No big deal. They came back with three LARGE pumpkins. Mom said she told Dad he could get two. That never works with him. So Catfish and I got dressed and helped with the pumpkins. My dad cut them and gutted them and Catfish and I were drawing the designs. Didn’t work too well.

So my cousins sister-in-law was called. Kim. Kim said she’d be down soon. Well my cousins wife (Jo) came down with Keira (their daughter) and Cloe (his daughter from a relationship long past). Later my cousin (Hank) joined us.

Let’s count, shall we?

Me

Catfish

Mom

Dad

Kim

Keira

Cloe

Jo

Hank

9… Nine of us for pumpkins.

Dad and Keira and Cloe were gutting pumpkins, Kim was drawing the designs and “shading” the pumpkins (my term for simply removing the rind so light will shine through beyond the actual picture but not as bright), Jo was carving the pumpkins, and my mother was taking pictures. Soon enough Jo sent Catfish and me to get more pumpkins.

Three. More. Pumpkins.

DId I mention my dad was keeping seeds from his pumpkins already? No? Yes… Yes he was. He had never had pumpkin seeds before and wanted to try them. What better way than by… No… This will be involved later.

So Catfish and I go to the store and pick up three more pumpkins. LARGE pumpkins, mind you. I won’t tell you how no one told me that the road was blocked off and the other road had cones all over the place from road work and I won’t tell you how in getting two pumpkins I squished my finger and I won’t tell you how I squished two mroe fingers getting A pumpkin out of the truck bed when we got home.

Eventually is came down to

Me: Gutting and thinning pumpkins (and rethinning because apparently my dad can’t thin pumpkins out very well)

Catfish: Pacing, running around being errand fish, keeping the small child Keira away when carving was happening.

Mom: Taking pictures and keeping us talking and focused.

Dad: Gutting pumpkins and carving designs when he could.

Cloe: Gutting and carving

Kim: Drawing and some carving.

Jo: Carving.

Hank: Showing up late and leaving several different times without word because he was fine either way.

No, we would not let my dad keep ALL the pumpkin seeds.

All-in-all, we ended up with some really cool pumpkins (some are now destroyed because of weather fluxuating).

Why are pumpkin seeds evil?

My birthday was the 23rd. My mom asked what kind of cake I wanted and we still had a lot of cake from dads birthday which was the 17th so I asked if instead of cake I could have cookies. It was a recipe that I’ve made but mom hasn’t so Kim offered to come down so I wouldn’t make my own birthday cookies.

I don’t think Kim will ever offer to help again.

Part of the cookies (Dirty Snowballs) is waiting for the balls to freeze. So Mom and Kim started on the pumpkin seeds. This is Tuesday morning (so the snowballs would be ready Wednesday for sure). By the time I got up on Tuesday morning the balls were in the freezer and Kim and Mom were talking waiting on seeds to bake.

If you have not made pumpkin seeds before here’s a helpful step. DON’T!

All of 10 websites said to soak seeds in saltwater (done) and then bake them. The only reason we wanted to shell them in the first place is because my dad has some health issues and without the shells the seeds are lower in sodium and fat.

Here’s how stubborn pumpkin seeds are. We were told that after baking just crack the shell like any other shell. That didn’t work. So we baked them longer. When they came out they still wouldn’t crack. So what ended up happening is we put oven mits down on the floor (hot pans), then the pan of seeds on the mits and a new sheet (new as in unused that day) on top and Kim stepped on the seeds.

They still… Didn’t… Crack…

Eventually after calling my grandpa twice (once had been done before I was awake), my aunt, texting a cousin, calling a neighbor and calling Kims mom (She saved us) we were told by Kims mom to CUT the seeds, then boil them and it would separate the seed and shell.

Kim: “Oh my God mom you’re a genius!”

Did I mentioned I had text my dad that he should be careful because Mom and Kim might be hunting him over pumpkin seeds? Yes, I did that.

Eventually seeds were done, but still… That’s a lot longer than what we thought it should be.

A friend gave me a lovely tip: bake the seeds at a low temperature (under 300) for a long time (say 2-3 hours). I still like my advice of don’t do it better.

Peace everyone.

~Heather/Razor

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