Friday, November 7, 2008

How to . . . what?

It's been about two months since I abandoned my community garden plot, and I've really missed it. Along with having a lot of squash, I also planted some sunflowers with the intent of trying to make my own sunflower seeds. When I felt like the sunflowers should be ready, I picked a few and looked up on the internet (a librarian's best friend) how to roast them.

Thanks to the University of Minnesota Extension Service, I learned that I had picked my sunflowers a little early, and they needed some time to think about if they really wanted to be edible.
Here are the intructions I found:
HOW TO HARVEST AND ROAST SUNFLOWER SEEDS: If you're growing sunflowers to harvest the seed heads, whether for human or animal consumption, don't cut the heads until the green disk at the back of the flower has begun to turn yellow. At this point the seeds will mature properly if left on the head and kept in a dry, well-ventilated place. After the ray flowers have fallen off, cover the head with a cheesecloth or paper bag to keep birds away until you cut it and bring it inside. Seeds are ready to store or eat when the disk at the back of the flower has turned dark brown. You can easily remove the seeds by rubbing two heads together, or just rubbing your palm over the seeds.
Who knew?

pre-soak - and still a little green

After I let my flowers sit for a while and turn brown and get ready, Matt and I pulled all the seeds out, washed them, and soaked them in a salt water for a night. That's not easy because sunflower seeds float. Again, who knew?

The next day I put them in my dehidrator to try out (I learned from a second batch, san-dehidrator, that this was a very good choice.) Then, when I came home from work, I toasted them for about 5-7 minutes in my 350 degree oven.


Yum Yum! They actually turned out really well. I gave some to my friend who really likes seed and she said they are the best she's ever had.

1 comment:

Krystal said...

You are so inventive, Sarah! You do some really cool things in your spare time. (Congrats again on the engagement...I don't know if you got my earlier comment.)