Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Hot Pumpkin Seeds

Let us not be naive and say we never make mistakes – because even the best do. I sometimes think that is how you get to be the best – by making mistakes.  I always remember my mom telling me, “you learn from your mistakes”.  This is so true.  But I think we should also remember that a good deal of us also “learn through others mistakes”.  Some mistakes can be costly, some others hurtful while many humorous on hindsight. 

Today I will share with you the story of one of my colleagues who made a genuine mistake, I am sure who learnt his lesson but very few of us admit that we too learned a lesson from his mistake.  So let us call him Rodney just to keep his name anonymous.  Rodney, like so many business travellers, has to travel a lot for his work.  Unlike many though, he has to drive 6 to 7 hours to travel from the UK to France.  Luckily, he travels with another colleague – so they share the driving. 

On one of these trips back to the UK after a tiring day at work in France, Rodney and his colleague were happy to hit the road and be back with their families for the weekend.  They estimated to be home by evening and called up home to let them know they would get some take-away to eat together once back.  So the channel was crossed and they decided to fuel up before the last leg.  Rodney volunteered to go out and fill in the diesel.  His brain thought diesel, his hands lifted and filled the car with petrol.  And he had decided to fill the tank – so a whopping 80 litres of petrol was put into a diesel engine car.  And then he shut the tank, replaced the pump back in place and then thought, “sh*t…did I just do that?”  He had to spend the next few hours with a very upset colleague who did not even want to see his face.  They waited for the road services to tow the car.

So Rodney is now known among his colleagues as “diesel boy”.  We laugh and joke about the mistake he made.  But all of us remember to make sure to pick the right pump when fuelling our cars to avoid this mistake.  So Rodney’s mistake was a costly one, but in the long run has perhaps helped many of us pay that extra attention when fuelling up.  And now sharing this story with you all, I hope you do the same.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Serves 4

1 cup pumpkin seeds
4 garlic cloves, crushed
¼ teaspoon rock salt
2 teaspoons crushed dried red chillies
1 teaspoon caster sugar
A wedge of lime


  1. Heat a small heavy based frying pan.  Add the pumpkin seeds and dry fry for a few minutes, stirring continually as they swell.   
  2. When the seeds have swollen, add the garlic and cook for a few minutes more, stirring all the time.  
  3. Add the salt and the crushed chillies and stir to mix.  Turn off the heat.   
  4. Sprinkle sugar over the seeds and shake the pan to ensure that they are all coated.  Tip the seeds into a bowl and serve with the wedge of lime for squeezing over the seeds.

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