Pumpkin shows up on the Thanksgiving table in so many guises. But have you ever thought about using the seeds?
Try adding the toasted seeds to stuffing, another staple of the Thanksgiving meal. Combine the seeds with toasted cubes of corn bread, sauteed Spanish chorizo and corn. Throw in a few roasted poblano chiles for a little heat, and season with oregano, cumin and Spanish smoked paprika. Toss the stuffing with melted butter and chicken broth, and then bake in the oven until the topping is crisp and golden and the contents are warmed through.
The dressing can be baked either inside the big bird or by itself, as described in this recipe. You can prepare the stuffing the day before, but do not put it in the turkey until just before roasting. Sound good? It was voted one of the best recipes of the year in 2008. You can find the recipe below.
Craving more? Check out our handy holiday recipes and cooking tips page to help you out with your Thanksgiving planning. Not only do we cover familiar holiday dishes, we also share tips and tricks to save you time and energy during this busy time of year. And you can find all your Thanksgiving recipe needs in our California Cookbook. If you have any tips or questions you'd like me to explore, leave a comment or shoot me an email at noelle.carter@latimes.
PUMPKINSEED STUFFING WITH CHORIZO
Total time: 1 hour, 40 minutes | Serves 6 to 8
Note: Pumpkinseed oil can be found at well-stocked supermarkets and gourmet cooking stores. Spanish chorizo can be found at select groceries. For a little extra heat, roast 2 to 4 jalapeños with the poblanos, then clean, stem, seed and chop them before adding to the stuffing.
10 cups cubed corn bread, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/4 cup pumpkinseed oil, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
1 1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups shelled pumpkinseeds
4 poblano chiles
6 tablespoons (¾ stick) butter, divided
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 pound Spanish chorizo, cut crosswise into 1/8-inch slices
1 1/2 cups corn, from about 2 medium corn cobs
2 onions, cut into ½-inch dice
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/3 cup dry white wine
3/4 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon Spanish smoked paprika
2 to 3 cups chicken broth
1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, gently toss the corn bread with 3 tablespoons pumpkinseed oil, the thyme, oregano, 1/2 teaspoon salt and several grinds of pepper. Spread the cubes in a single layer on a large, foil-lined baking sheet and toast for 20 to 25 minutes, until lightly golden, shaking the pan every 5 minutes for even coloring. Remove from heat and allow to cool, then place in a large bowl.
3. In a medium bowl, toss the pumpkinseeds with the remaining tablespoon pumpkinseed oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt and several grinds of pepper. Place the seeds on a foil-lined sheet and toast until fragrant, puffed and lightly golden, about 10 minutes. Remove and cool, then add to the corn bread.
4. Meanwhile, roast the chiles on the stove top directly over a hot burner until charred on all sides, about 5 minutes. Remove to a sealed paper bag to rest until cool enough to peel. Peel the charred skin (do not rinse under water as this will remove flavor). Halve the chiles lengthwise, stem and seed. Cut the halves crosswise into 1/8-inch strips. Add to the corn bread.
5. Heat a large, heavy-bottom skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons butter and the olive oil, then the chorizo and cook until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Remove the chorizo with a slotted spoon, leaving the fat in the pan, and add the chorizo to the stuffing mixture.
6. Stir the corn and onions into the pan and season with 1/4 teaspoon salt and several grinds of pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the corn is crisp-tender and the onions have softened and are translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until it is aromatic, about 30 seconds. Stir in the white wine and cook, scraping any bits of flavoring from the pan, until the white wine has almost evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes. Cool slightly, then add to the stuffing mixture.
7. Gently toss in the cumin and Spanish paprika, and season the stuffing with 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste. Melt the remaining butter and drizzle over the stuffing. Drizzle 2 cups chicken broth over the stuffing and gently toss. Add additional broth as desired.
8. Place the stuffing in a buttered, 13-by-9-inch baking dish or casserole and place in the oven. Cover and bake for 20 minutes, then remove the cover and continue to bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the top is lightly toasted. Remove and serve.
Each of 8 servings: 772 calories; 25 grams protein; 49 grams carbohydrates; 7 grams fiber; 55 grams fat; 18 grams saturated fat; 89 mg cholesterol; 1,491 mg sodium.