|Pumpkin seed oil|
Pumpkin seed oil is obtained from dried, ground seed (kernels) of Cucurbita pepo L. by pressing.
The pumpkin, a berry fruit, originated in the American tropics and the fruit is the heaviest in the plant world, weighing up to 25 kg. The plant is a creeper or climber, with yellow flowers. It forms round or oval ovaries containing the seeds, which are approx. 2 cm in length. Today, pumpkins are also native to temperate latitudes in Europe, America, China, Africa and in the countries of the former Soviet Union. The major cultivating countries are Austria (Steiermark), Hungary, Romania, Turkey, Italy, Southern Russia, Argentina, China, Japan, Egypt and Syria.
Dried, ground kernels (oil content =35%) from the fruit are pressed to yield a dark green oil rich in oleic and linoleic acids, giving off a characteristic smell and having a typical nutty taste. The oil is not refined and virtually all product is offered for sale in the cold-pressed form. Despite the fact that pumpkin seed oil has a high g-tocopherol content, it becomes rancid fairly quickly, on account of its unsaturated character.
Pumpkin seed oil is a popular edible oil for dressing salads. Locally, pumpkin seed oil is a very popular edible oil, especially in Austria, Hungary and Southern Russia whereas, in Germany, the high price restricts use almost exclusively to haute cuisine. In the pharmaceuticals trade, pumpkin seed oil is used, along with pumpkin seeds (relief of bladder weakness and prostate problems), as a filler for soft gelatin capsules.
INCI Name: Cucurbita Pepo Seed Oil