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Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Preserving sunflower and pumpkin seeds for eating

Your sunflower crop can be harvested from around late September until early October and turned into a delicious snack which is rich in fibre, vitamins E and B, amino acids and essential minerals.
Wait until the back of sunflowers head start to turn yellow, the heads turn brown and the plants start wilting The seeds will, at this stage, should be hard to touch and have a black and white striped outer coating. Cut the heads from the plant leaving a length of stem and hang to continue drying in the sun for a few days and keep any hungry birds at bay, if necessary, by netting. 

(1) Once completely dry, rub the seeds into a bucket and soak overnight in salty water to soften the shells.

(2) Drain the water and dry in the sun for a few hours,once dry clean out any plant debris.

(3) Place on a shallow tray and put into a 180 degree celsius pre-heated oven. If desired you can add salt, garlic powder or paprika to flavour mixing with a little olive oil  before roasting. 

(4) Roast the seeds for about 25 minutes but carefully watch and remove the seeds once golden brown.

(5) Cool and enjoy or store in an air-tight jar in the fridge to prolong your snacks life.

Pumpkin seeds should be washed to thoroughly to remove the clinging fibrous tissue. The seeds can be roasted after being sun dried for a few days. 

(1). Wash and dry the seeds after sun drying.

(2). To roast, take the dried seeds and toss with olive oil and salt and cook in a pre-heated oven at 150c for about 10-15 minutes whilst stirring occasionally. 

(3). Once cooled, store in an air-tight jar and eat within two months.

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