When my first born daughter, now almost 4, was about 2 years old, we were about to sit and have dinner, pasta, and it was cooking on the stove. As many other 2 year olds, mine was a bit impatient when hungry, and kept asking for the “pasta, pasta, pasta”. I explained that it will take a few more minutes for the pasta to be ready, saying “it’s on the stove, I’m cooking it, the pasta is cooking now”. That made my little one raise her head quickly, look at me with a surprised smile on her face, and say: “pasta cookie? I love pasta cookie!”. I guess its a combination of me not being a native English speaker and her charming and naive child imagination craving for a combination of pasta and cookies, either way, it made me laugh that entire day..
The recipe I’m sharing today, while not being a pasta cookie recipe, is mildly sweet, wonderfully creamy, full of healthy ingredients for our kids (and us!), is filling and obviously seasonal now. And to top that, it’s super simple to make, and if you already have pre-cooked the pumpkin then it should take no longer than 20 minutes. While the recipe calls for pumpkin, you can also use butternut squash instead or acorn squash, both turn out great! Simply blend the ingredients until it reaches a smooth and creamy texture.
You can use this recipe for any kind of pasta, I found that with toddlers it is easiest to use fun shaped pasta as they can easily pick it up with their hands or with a fork and it is less cumbersome for them than the spaghetti, but with older kids just use what your family usually likes. To make it extra healthy, try using soba noodles, which are made from 100% buckwheat flour, or other whole food noodles. By the way, if you like soba noodles, check out my recipe for soba noodles sushi, it takes less than 20 minutes to make!
Moran is a wife, a mother of 2 little girls, a full time high tech employee, and a savvy home cook. In her blog, VeganHightechMom, Moran shares easy and quick wholefood plant based recipes, targeted for busy people (like all of us..) that still want to feed their family healthy, colorful, nutritious and tasty food.
- 16 ounce pasta, shapes
- 1 1/4 cup (1″ cubes) pumpkin, raw
- 1 1/2 cup cashews
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1/2 cup pumpkin seed kernels
- 1 tablespoon basil, fresh
- Place the pumpkin (skin removed) in a pot with boiling water, and cook until it is soft (soft enough so you can mash it with the back of a fork). It should take about 20 minutes.
- In the meanwhile, place the cashews in a bowl with hot boiled water and soak for 10 minutes.
- When the pumpkin has softened enough, remove it from water and place it along with the drained cashews, the nutmeg and the salt in a blender, and blend until it reaches a smooth and creamy texture.
- Cook the pasta according to the manufacturer instructions on the box. A couple minutes before the pasta is about to be ready, heat a large skillet with one tablespoon olive oil and one teaspoon sesame oil, add the pumpkin sauce in and mix, then drain the pasta and add it to the pan. Mix to make sure all pieces are nicely coated with the pumpkin sauce. Serve warm, optionally with some pumpkin seeds and basil leaves on top.