Pumpkin Seed Crust 1.750

Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post

Local Living Mar 28, 2013

This pumpkin seed mixture is a weeknight dinner saver. It flavors any salad; adds crunch and spice to plain lentils, rice or quinoa; tops sauteed or baked fish or chicken. You can even eat it with a spoon.

The seeds are high in zinc, supporting the immune system; protein, including the important amino acid tryptophan; magnesium, which is good for the heart; and manganese, which aids in nervous system function. The curry has anti-inflammatory properties.

To use it on the chicken, whisk 2 large egg whites until they are foamy. Pound 4 chicken breast halves to an even thickness, then dip them into the egg whites, coating both sides. Press both sides into the pumpkin seed crust mixture, making sure to coat them evenly; this will use about 1 3/4 cups. Saute in a nonstick skillet with a little bit of olive oil; the crust will brown nicely.

Make Ahead: The crust mixture can be frozen for up to 3 months.

Servings: 1.75 cups
  • 1 cup raw, unsalted, hulled pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup plain dried bread crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper


Place the pumpkin seeds in a food processor; pulse until coarsely chopped. Transfer to a small, dry skillet; toast over low heat for several minutes, until fragrant, shaking the pan often to promote even doneness. Transfer to a mixing bowl to cool.

Stir in the bread crumbs, the oil, crushed red pepper flakes and the curry powder. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Use right away, or freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months.

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Recipe Source

Adapted from "San Francisco Flavors: Favorite Recipes From the Junior League of San Francisco" (Chronicle, 1999).

Tested by Kendra Nichols.

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Email questions to the Food Section at food@washpost.com.