Have you ever heard of “pepitas”? In Spanish that means –little seeds. I’ve seen them called for in recipes, but I didn’t know until this week that they were referring to pumpkin seeds. This week the 38 Power Foods blog group is discovering that there’s more to this little seed than meets the eye. According to the World’s Healthiest Foods, The World Health Organization recommends that people eat pumpkin seeds due to their high content of zinc, which boosts immunity and keeps your immune system functioning well, as well as helping to keep eye-sight from age related vision loss, like macular degeneration. In addition, zinc plays an important for healing wounds. Pumpkin seeds are also a very good source of manganese, tryptophan, and magnesium.
What do they taste like? They are similar to the sunflower seed but in my opinion they taste better. But watch out, like sunflower seeds and popcorn, once you start eating pepitas it’s hard to stop. You’ll find them in the markets with the shell on, or the shell off, toasted or raw. If you buy them raw you’ll want to toast them in the oven at 170° for about 15 to 20 minutes, but no more than 20 or they lose their nutritional value. Eating pepitas is good for your healthy eating habits, and it’s best to bake them without added salt.
Though the name of the dish “Roasted Vegetables with Pepitas and Minted Curry Yogurt Sauce” is quite a mouthful, this vegan recipe is uncomplicated, and you can easily add roast chicken or turkey to make it more interesting for the non-vegan. I recommend serving it over Quinoa Pilaf (you can omit the pomegranate seeds).
Prep Time: 15 minutes Baking Time: 25 minutes Yield: 4-1/2 cups
Ingredients for the Roasted Vegetables:
¾ to 1 pound rutabaga
¾ to 1 pound turnip
¾ pound broccoli
1 pound sweet potato
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup toasted pepitas (to add after the vegetables are cooked and topped with the sauce)
Ingredients for the Sauce:
1 cup plain yogurt
½ teaspoon minced garlic
½ teaspoon curry
½ teaspoon turmeric
1/3 teaspoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon chopped mint
sea salt to taste
1. Pre-heat the oven to 375°, and then peel and roughly chop the rutabaga, turnips, and the sweet potatoes. Wash the Brussels sprouts, remove loose outer leaves, trim the bottom and slice them in half lengthwise.
2. Place the rutabaga on a large sheet pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil, and put it in the hot oven for 5 minutes. And then, add the remaining vegetables and sprinkle with the sea salt and the garlic salt. Put the sheet pan back in the oven and bake another 15 to 20 minutes, depending on your ideal for tenderness.
3. Whisk together well the ingredients for the yogurt sauce and check the seasonings.
4. Dish up the vegetables, pour on the sauce and sprinkle the pepitas over the top.
If you are a blogger and would like to take part in our group blogging about Power Foods: 150 Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients, (from the editors at Martha Stewart’s Living Magazine) we’d love to have your company. Contact: Mireya(at)myhealthyeatinghabits.com for details.
Check out what these other bloggers have cooked up! Alyce - More Time at the Table, Ansh - Spice Roots, Casey –SweetSav Jeanette - Jeanette’s Healthy Living, Martha - Simple-Nourished-Living, Minnie – The Lady 8 Home, Mireya - My Healthy Eating Habits