Hi! Winnie Griggs here.
I’ve been writing about the community of Turnabout, Texas for a while now, in fact my seventh book in the series will be out in December. Turnabout has become very real to me–I feel as if I’ve actually visited there, walked the streets, visited the shops and homes and chatted with a few of the townsfolk.
One of the spots in the town where nearly everyone stops in at one time or another, especially when they want to indulge in a special treat, is the Blue Bottle Sweet Shop and Tea Parlor. It’s run by Eve Dawson, the heroine of A Family For Christmas. One of Eve’s specialties is pumpkin seed brittle.
Since we’re moving into Autumn, a time of year when pumpkin seeds will be plentiful, I thought that, for my contribution to Recipe Week, I’d share a more modern (and spicy!) version of that recipe with you.
Spicy Pumpkin Seed Brittle
- 1-1/2 cups shelled pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- 1 cup white granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- Optional: 1 tsp. cayenne pepper (or to taste)
- Generously grease a large baking sheet (18×12 or larger). Set aside.
- If the seeds are already roasted skip this step and go on to the next.
Place seeds in a medium- large skillet, then toast the pumpkin seeds over medium heat until lightly browned. Remove skillet from heat and set aside.
- Mix the water, corn syrup, and sugar in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring constantly using a wooden spoon. Attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pan (do not allow it to touch the bottom of the pan).
- Continue cooking without stirring, until the mixture reaches 285 degrees F (140 degrees C).
- Add in the pumpkin seeds and the spices. Continue to cook the mixture, stirring frequently to prevent the candy from scorching as well as to keep the seeds from sticking to the bottom of the pan, until the temperature reaches 300 degrees F (149 degrees C).
- (The brittle will foam up when the baking soda is added so be careful when performing this step) Remove the pan from heat and stir in the baking soda, vanilla, and butter. Stir until everything is well mixed and the foaming settles.
- Immediately pour the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. If you want a thinner brittle, spread with a well-greased spatula. The brittle will set quickly so you must work with haste
- Let the brittle cool completely and then break into pieces.
- Store in an airtight container or a plastic freezer bag in order to keep the brittle from becoming sticky.
Brittle will keep well at room temperature for up to two weeks.
Makes approximately 1.5 pounds.
So tell me, do you like a little heat with your sweet (like me!), or are you sweet all the way?