Suppression

Seeds

Category: Food

Type

Voluntary

Introduction and description

According to Wikipedia a seed is

a small embryonic plant enclosed in a covering called the seed coat, usually with some stored food. It is the product of the ripened ovule of gymnosperm and angiosperm plants which occurs after fertilization and some growth within the mother plant. The formation of the seed completes the process of reproduction in seed plants (started with the development of flowers and pollination), with the embryo developed from the zygote and the seed coat from the integuments of the ovule”

In this context I have defined a seed as an edible seed – and one that can be eaten without cooking. Again, in order to clarify the definition used here this then distinguishes them from 

  • Wholegrains - which are also seeds but need cooking, they have their own entry on the site
  • Nuts - which are botanically seeds too, but I want to treat them separately as a nut is found in a hard-shelled fruit that for cooking purposes has to be opened to release the seed. There is also another very loose difference in that many nuts are found on trees, for example walnuts, or underground, for example peanuts, whereas seeds are the above ground byproduct of smaller plants.
  • Beans – or more correctly legumes, which are also seeds, but they are soft and found often in a soft shell coating. Generally speaking these too need cooking, although some, like peas, a can be eaten raw
  • Sprouting seeds – which are generally seeds that are inedible unless they are sprouted. Examples here include alfalfa and mung bean, although as you will see from the entry on the site many seeds benefit from sprouting

There are a great number of edible seeds. Examples include 

  • Sunflower seeds – delicious raw or toasted and used in salads
  • Pumpkin seeds – delicious raw or toasted and used in salads
  • Flax seeds - which I have described separately as they have some specific effects
  • Sesame seeds – used to make sesame oil, they are especially nice toasted and sprinkled on savoury vegetables or sweets such as apples
  • Chia seeds - Rich in omega 3, fibre, protein and minerals they can be used in smoothies, salads, or toasted
  • Melon seeds – like pumpkin seeds
  • Hemp seeds – use like chia seeds or flax
  • Poppy seeds – added to salads or on bread
  • Mustard seeds – can be eaten raw but they are better taste wise when ground up with water or 'popped' on high heat and added to foods.  There are two types
  • Pomegranate seeds - actually taste quite like pomegranate, which many people find quite surprising. A number of health benefits have been attributed to pomegranates in general, but nobody knows much about the seeds other than that they make a nice snack
  • Safflower seeds

 And they have healing properties 

Method

Toast them or fry them in very hot oil for only  a few seconds if their coating is very hard.  The toasting releases flavours and gives them a wondefully nutty flavour.  Those that are not too hard can also be eaten raw.

Some seeds are delicious sprinkled over cooked vegetables.  Asafoetida can be used to spice them up a bit.  They can also be added to salads.  For example apple cabbage and toasted sunflower seeds dressed with walnut oil and sea salt; fresh spinach leaves [young ones] with white peach slices and toasted pumpkin seeds dressed with hazelnut oil and a little sea salt; crunchy lettuce with strawberry slices, black pepper and poppy seeds, dressed with olive oil.

Cooking apple lightly roasted in the oven with a filling of dates can be dressed with honey and toasted sesame seeds for dessert.

Advantages

Delicious

Nutritious

Easily obtained

Inexpensive

Disadvantages

Can't think of any

Related observations