How to Eat Maple Seeds

Thứ bảy - 27/04/2024 01:13
When you think of maple trees, you probably immediately think of delicious maple syrup. But maple seeds are also a tasty and nutritious snack. While raw seeds may taste slightly bitter, cooked seeds have a sweet flavor. They're easy to...
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When you think of maple trees, you probably immediately think of delicious maple syrup. But maple seeds are also a tasty and nutritious snack.[1] While raw seeds may taste slightly bitter, cooked seeds have a sweet flavor. They’re easy to collect if you have a tree in your backyard or are out on the trail, and can be eaten raw, roasted, or boiled. Prepare them any way you like to make your own healthy snack or garnish.

Method 1
Method 1 of 4:

Harvesting Maple Seeds

  1. Step 1 Gather seeds in the spring or summer.
    Maple seeds are at their ripest in warm weather. As the weather gets colder, the seeds start entering their winter modes and become much more bitter.[2]
    • Ripe seeds have a full, green pod. If the pod is starting to shrivel or turn brown, the seeds will probably be bitter.
    • Seed pods fall off the tree when they’re ripe. To get the freshest seeds, pick up newly-fallen pods that are still all green.
  2. Step 2 Find smaller seeds for a sweeter taste.
    All maple seeds are edible, but some taste better than others. As a general rule, smaller maple seeds are sweeter and larger ones are more bitter. Seek out smaller seeds for the sweetest taste.
    • The taste of the seeds can also vary from tree to tree. Try harvesting seeds from several to find the best taste.
    • If you can only find bitter seeds, don’t worry. You can improve the taste by roasting or boiling the seeds.
  3. Step 3 Soak the seed pods in water for 1 hour.
    Removing the seeds from the pod is much easier after they’ve been soaked in water. Fill a pot or bowl with water and let the seeds soak for 1 hour.[3]
    • If you’re using water out on a hiking trail, make sure it’s clean. If you aren’t sure, boil the water over a fire for 1 minute to kill any germs.
  4. Step 4 Remove the seeds from the pod.
    Each maple pod usually has 2 seeds, if both wings are still connected. Peel away the pod and any remaining pieces of the outer skin.
    • The outer skin is not dangerous, so don't worry if you leave some behind. It just may not taste great.
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Method 2
Method 2 of 4:

Roasting the Seeds

  1. Step 1 Lay the seeds on a baking sheet.
    Spread them out so all the seeds get equal seasoning and bake evenly in the oven. Don't let them pile up or they won't cook evenly.[4]
  2. Step 2 Sprinkle on the seasonings of your choice.
    Here you can get creative and add any flavoring you want. Salt and pepper are always good options. For some extra spice, try ground cayenne pepper. Drizzle some olive oil on the seeds for extra flavor. Cinnamon can pair nicely with a maple flavor.
    • Maple seeds are small so don't cover them in seasoning. Scoop some into a spoon or your fingers and just sprinkle the seasonings to add extra flavor.
    • To sample different flavor pairings, put seeds on several baking sheets and season each one differently. See which one you like the best.
  3. Step 3 Bake them in the oven at 350 °F (177 °C) for 8-10 minutes.
    Check on the seeds periodically. They should turn slightly brown during the roasting process. If they’re turning black, they’re starting to burn. Remove them at this point.
    • Avoid burns and let the seeds cool before you eat them.
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Method 3
Method 3 of 4:

Boiling the Seeds

  1. Step 1 Put the seeds in a pot with water.
    You can easily boil the maple seeds whether you’re at home or on the trail. All you need is a pot and a flame. Start by loading the seeds into the pot, then fill it with water.
    • The pot doesn’t need to be completely full. Use enough water to cover all the seeds.
  2. Step 2 Boil the seeds for 15 minutes.
    Bring the water to a boil, and then lower the flame so the water simmers. Leave the pot on the flame for 15 minutes.
    • If you're doing this on a campfire, control the amount of heat on the pot by raising or lowering it.
    • Turn the flame up if the water stops bubbling.
  3. Step 3 Drain the water.
    Use a strainer and pour the water and seeds through it. Then pour the seeds into a bowl and let them cool.[5]
    • When the seeds are cool enough, squeeze a few to make sure they’re soft. If they’re still hard, they weren’t boiled enough.
  4. Step 4 Season the maple seeds however you want.
    Boiling improves the taste of maple seeds, but you can also add whatever flavors you like. Salt, pepper, butter, and other spices all jazz up the seeds and add flavor. Cinnamon adds a nice touch to a fall meal.[6]
    • Remember to just lightly season the seeds. Take a pinch in your fingers or in a spoon and sprinkle it over the seeds. Taste them and see if you need more flavor.
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Method 4
Method 4 of 4:

Using Maple Seeds in Snacks and Meals

  1. Step 1 Eat the seeds raw for a convenient option.
    Eating maple seeds raw is not dangerous, and some hikers recommend picking them for a snack while on the trail. Raw seeds can have an unpleasant, bitter taste, however, so other options for preparation improve their taste.[7]
  2. Step 2 Snack on cooked seeds for a nutritious snack.
    Whether they’re raw, roasted, or boiled, maple seeds are an easy and convenient snack to have plain. Grab a handful whenever you feel like it.
    • Load the seeds into a plastic bag for convenient carry. Then you can snack on them in the car or on a walk.
  3. Step 3 Sprinkle the seeds on a salad to add crunch.
    Seasoned maple seeds make a great salad topping. Make your favorite salad, then add the seeds as a finishing touch.[8]
    • There are vinaigrette dressings that use maple flavoring. This dressing would pair nicely with fresh maple seeds in your salad.
    • Be careful not to choke when eating a salad with maple seeds. They're very small and can get stuck in your throat if you swallow them whole. Chew all your bites carefully.
  4. Step 4 Grind the seeds to use them as a seasoning.
    Throw the seeds in a food processor to grind them up into powder. Ground seeds can be used for extra flavoring in your cooking, or even as flour.[9]
    • Ground seeds can be used as a tasty soup thickener.
    • Sprinkle ground seeds into mashed potatoes for extra flavoring.
    • Replace wheat flour with the maple seed flour in your recipes for a gluten-free option.
    • Be careful when using a food processor. Keep your fingers away from the blades.
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