Pimenty Pepitas (aka how to make your kitchen smell like our greenhouse during chile drying season)
The origins of roasted pepitas are tied to Aztec culture and roasted pepitas are still a popular snack in Mexico. We definitely didn't invent these in any particular way.
Piment d'Ville had a table at the Good Food Mercantile in San Francisco in January 2020 and I was stumped about how to give people a sample of Piment d'Ville without making people eat a spoonful of chile powder during the trade show. I thought through a lot of options until realizing that pumpkin seeds were the perfect vehicle to get folks hooked on Piment d'Ville. The pepitas got a great response and folks asked if thought about selling them as a product. We'll have to see, but it could be a great next venture! After the show, I showed up to a friend's house with 8 pounds of roasted pepitas that were left over and proceeded to fill up sandwich bags full of the snack and hand them off to everyone. Let's just say it was a success.
Truly, I think these could be a great option to add a crunch to your salad, to add a bit more flavor to a winter squash soup, to keep in your bag for a hit of protein when you're feeling tired, to take on the trails, or to put on a cheese plate. Also, when I tossed the pepitas with Piment d'ville, I was immediately transported to October here on the farm when the chiles are in the dehydrator and everything smells incredible. It's a scent we've been trying to share with everyone and are pretty stoked to have found the way to do it. Make sure to toss the pepitas with Piment d'Ville after they are fully roasted. If you toss them before you put the pepitas in the oven, the Piment d'Ville will burn and turn bitter.
1 1/2 cups of raw unsalted pumpkin seeds
1 - 2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 - 1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp Piment d'Ville (regular, smoky or spicy)
Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
Dump the pumpkin seeds into a medium sized bowl. Add enough olive oil to lightly coat all the seeds, somewhere between 1-2 Tbsp of oil. Depending on your love of salt, add 1/2 to 1 tsp of salt. Toss well to make sure everything is seasoned evenly.
Dump the pumpkin seeds onto the baking sheet and spread into an even layer. Roast the pumpkin seeds for 30 minutes, shaking the pan every 10 minutes to ensure they don't burn.
After 30 minutes, take the seeds out of the oven and dump the seeds into a wide bottomed bowl. Toss with 1 Tbsp Piment d'Ville. Spread the seeds out in the bowl so that they cool evenly.
Start snacking and don't stop.