Pepitas actually differ from regular pumpkin seeds in that they have tender, greenish, soft shells unlike regular pumpkin seeds.
“Pepita” is the Spanish word for pumpkin seeds, but true “pepitas” are very different from what comes out of your traditional jack-o-lanterns.
The word “pepita” in Spanish actually means “little seed of squash”,
These edible seeds of pumpkins and certain other cultivars of squash are typically rather flat and asymmetrically oval and flat,, light green in color, and have a white outer hull, or no hull at all.
In fact, true “pepitas” only come from certain types of pumpkins—such as thin-skinned Styrian or oilseed pumpkins—which have shell-free seeds.
Pumpkins, and their seeds, have been traced at least as far back as the Aztec cultures of 1300-1500 AD. From their .having once been a celebrated food among many Native American tribes, who treasured them both for their dietary and medicinal properties, to now being a gourmet ingredient in many key restaurants.
Roasted pumpkins seeds are so delicious and nutritiou, that they should be enjoyed throughout the year, not only during the Halloween season.
In fact, today pepitas are a trendy ingredient, found on just about every hgh-dollar restaurant in America.
The countries that produce the most pumpkins, and so obviously the most pumpkin seeds, are China…and then followed by India, Russia, the Ukraine, Mexico, and the United States.
In the United States, Illinois is the largest producer of pumpkins,…followed by California, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and New York.
Today pumpkins are commercially grown in pretty much every state. In fact, over one thousand acres of American farmland are planted with pumpkins.