The Steirisches Kürbiskernöl PGI is oil made from Styrian pumpkin seed of the Cucurbita pepo L. species, Styriaca variety.
The Steirisches Kürbiskernöl PGI production area is in the cities of Leibnitz, Radkersburg, Voitsberg and Weiz in the district of Graz-Umgebung, and in the cities of Jennersdorf and Güssing, in the district of Burgenland, in the south of the federal state of Styria.
The pumpkin seeds are selected manually, and then cleaned, dried and toasted. A cold pressing is then carried from which the oil is obtained due to the natural pressure of the seeds. The oil is allowed to stand for three days to clarify it before bottling.
Appearance and Flavour
Steirisches Kürbiskernöl PGI is oil rich in minerals and with a high content of polyunsaturated fatty acids that give it a thick consistency. The colour is dark green and has a particularly intense taste of toasted pumpkin seeds.
The edible pumpkin stems from Central America and is a plant that has been grown for millennia, particularly in Mexico. It was introduced into Europe and Asia after the discovery of America, where today it is much appreciated for its characteristics. The use of the pumpkin for the extraction of oil came much later in 1742. In fact in the 18th century, alongside culinary and medicinal use, the characteristics made it idea to be used for the production of mechanical oil for the army. Today Steirisches Kürbiskernöl PGI is produced annually. In Styria alone production exceeds 2,000 tons per year and thanks to its quality competes with many seed oils produced throughout the world, differing in quality and price.
Steirisches Kürbiskernöl PGI should be stored in a dry and cool place but not too cold, and away from direct light and heat sources. It can be consumed both raw and cooked and traditionally is used to give a special twist to salads or to flavour other dishes like soups, pasta dishes, sauces, rice and sandwiches.
The product is sold as Steirisches Kürbiskernöl PGI. It is marketed in 0.25-0.5 or 1 litre glass bottles.
Steirisches Kürbiskernöl PGI is a very healthy product thanks to its rich vitamin E, B1, B2 and B6 content. Its peculiar features are due to the traditional pressing procedure and the cultivation of pumpkin seed without skin, typical of Styria, where the mechanization of harvesting and processing was invented.