Sunday, October 31, 2010


Another Halloween has come and gone and once again I have denied myself one of my favorite things. Not candy, which I've eaten way more than my share. Not costumes although it was one of the few years that we didn't have a party to attend. And not even trick-or-treaters, since we never get any of those at the townhouse. What I'm talking about is pumpkin seeds. I'm seedless again this year.

One of my favorite things about Halloween is pumpkin carving. I'm terrible at it but I love to create my happy smiling pumpkin heads for the front porch. But this year I didn't even buy a pumpkin much less carve it. No smiling or scary orange heads for the neighborhood kids to smash. And even worse, no seeds. Pumpkin seeds are one of the great pleasures of the fall. Almost better than pomegranates and you know how much I like those. I like to roast my pumpkin seeds with a bit of salt and cayenne for a touch of heat. Done right, they are one of the best snacks, addictive and good for you.

Two years ago, Jeff and I had some friends over to carve pumpkins. I had gone to the store and picked up six of them. We carved and laughed and drank wine and had a good time. After everything was cleaned up I washed the seeds and spread them out on paper towels on the kitchen table to dry. I promised some of the roasted seeds to our friends and they went home. I headed upstairs to change and came back down to find the cat sitting on the table amid the seeds, chewing on them. Needless to say I tossed the whole batch. No seeds that year.

Last year we went to my sister's place to carve pumpkins and answer the door for trick-or-treaters. It was a ton of fun and food and by the end I was so full that I went home without even taking any of the seeds. None that year. So this year I was determined that we would have another carving party and this time I would just roast the seeds without drying them. But I never got to the store. We never had the party. And I never made any seeds. I'm going seedless again this year. It just doesn't feel like Halloween. I'll have to pick up some old pumpkins and carve them up tomorrow. Do you think my neighbors would find Thanksgiving Jack-O-Lanterns odd?

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