“Pepita”, the Spanish term for the seed, has the right sound for the crisp, salty nutritious cucurbit “nut.” I toast only the hull-less types. Seeds that hide in thick, heavy hulls must be cracked open to pry out the minimal rewards, while the slimmer naked seeds can be roasted and enjoyed whole.
To loosen the seeds from their fibrous net, soak the mass in a bowl of water, squishing now and then to loosen the seeds. Skim off floating seeds, then squish some more so that the remaining strands release their hold. Repeat as needed.
To tenderize and season seeds, first boil in salted water, then bake. For mild flavor, toss with corn, safflower, soy, or almond oil. For a slightly more pronounced taste, choose pumpkin seed, olive, peanut, or roasted sesame oil. Because the quantity of seeds will vary, consider the following as a general guide, not a fixed recipe.