As the fall season brings a cool breeze to the air, it also brings pumpkins and spice and everything nice! One pumpkin sourced food we’ve noticed that hasn’t found its way to the spotlight yet is Pumpkin Seed Oil.
Pumpkin Seed Oil finds its origin as a specialty product of modern day Austria and Slovenia. It is made by pressing the hulled and slow roasted seeds of the Styrian pumpkin. It is specially bred for seeds that are rich in a greenish-amber oil that looks red in thick layers and turns green when spread thinly. The oil has a delightfully intense nutty flavor that makes a tasty salad dressing on its own or when combined with honey and cider vinegar.
Pumpkins have a natural collection of fatty acids and antioxidants that have been shown to help relieve certain conditions when added modestly to a healthy diet. Eastern Europe hails it as a tasty and popular home remedy for a variety of chronic ailments. The lubricating effect of the essential fats can ease joint pain in people with arthritis. Some studies have shown that it may be as effective as the drug -Indomethacin - that is currently used to treat rheumatoid arthritis. It is also rich in Vitamins A and E which promote healthy skin and hair. The mix of antioxidants and other compounds can also help kidney health and prostate function. Just like with any fruit oils, moderate consumption can balance out cholesterol levels for a healthier heart.
The unique flavor profile and nutritional value of pumpkin seed oil should inspire you to try this quirky oil with your usual recipes for the fall. While it isn’t suitable for high-temperature methods such as deep-frying, pumpkin seed oil can be used in a variety of marinades, dressings, and spreads to introduce a new taste in your holiday meals.