Guest Post from Sarah Dillon Hart.  Super-Mom to 4 Boys under 5!

 

While most people are sad to bid farewell to the dog days of summer, I’m rolling out the red carpet for fall’s arrival.  I’m ready for cooler air, Halloween, apple picking, pumpkin patches, cozy sweaters, scarves, fires, crisp leaves, bright yellow mums, braising meats and soups/stews/chili.  You can imagine my delight then when I found this at the farmer’s market this past weekend…

                         

                     

A sugar pumpkin!  Apparently my desire for all things fall RIGHT NOW isn’t too premature if pumpkins are starting to make an appearance.  Much to my husband’s dismay, I put pumpkin in everything as soon as the first leaf drops onto our lawn.  Muffins, pancakes, bread, macaroni and cheese, soups, pasta… you name it.  My boys seem to share my enthusiasm for pumpkin - my two year old was carrying it around like a new best friend and shouting “Hooooowwwweeeeeeen!” until we eventually distracted him and hid the thing in the pantry (I don’t know where they get their love for Halloween from.  I mean, it’s not like their costumes are already picked out or that I’ve already ordered more decorations from Amazon or anything).

Fall is also back-to-school time, which means my laundry list of nightly duties gets a little longer because I have to pack lunch and snacks for my boys.  I could wait until the morning to do it, but I can’t be trusted to pack a healthy lunchbox in a sleep-deprived state.  Especially before any caffeine is pumping through me.  Also?  I have 4 hungry little mouths to feed in the morning (5 if you include my husband).  There simply isn’t enough time in the morning for me to get it done, so I take my time at night to make lunchboxes healthy and interesting.  Who wants to eat the same sandwich day after day?  It can be challenging though to come up with different lunch ideas that don’t include two pieces of bread, a slice of cheese, and some deli meat.   Leftovers are always an easy option, depending of course on what you had for dinner, and dips are always popular in my house.  Hummus is an especially good choice – serve it with crackers, pretzels, apple slices, pita, veggies, or even spread it on the old standby sandwich.  So when I came across this recipe that combined our love of hummus AND pumpkin I had to give it a try.  It’s a great option for the wee ones’ lunchboxes, but it would also be perfect for serving at a game day party (football – yet another reason to love fall!).  So give this recipe a try, preferably while wearing a cozy sweater.

                         

 

ROASTED GARLIC & ROSEMARY PUMPKIN HUMMUS

Recipe from Pinch of Yum (http://pinchofyum.com/roasted-garlic-rosemary-pumpkin-hummus)

  • 1-2 cloves roasted garlic (see #1)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • ⅔ cup pumpkin puree*
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey
  • ½ teaspoon finely minced fresh rosemary (more to taste)
  • Salt to taste

 

  1.  To roast the garlic, simmer the peeled cloves in a small saucepan with olive oil for 15-20 minutes over low/medium heat.
  2.  Puree all ingredients except rosemary in a blender or food processor until smooth. Add more oil or water as needed.
  3. Drizzle with a little extra honey and top with chopped rosemary to serve.

 

*Note:  you can use canned pumpkin, but I roasted my sugar pumpkin from the farmer’s market at 400 degrees for about 45 minutes instead and froze the leftovers for my littlest guy who is just starting solids.  Lunch, snack, and baby food all in one!