Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Pumpkin Squares

Here in Brussels, Fall has begun to make her appearance. Last night, while cleaning up from a yummy dinner (Sweet Potato fries, Tofu Cubes and Corn on the Cob), Kevin, Aodhan and I watched a storm soak our back garden. Personally, I have always loved the chillier days of Fall, and welcome them and their soup-squash-stew-casserole-promises.

To match the weather I made some little pumpkin squares. Using my last can of sacred pumpkin (almost impossible to find here in Brussels), I made this really healthy treat, which allowed me to sneak in some important walnuts (EFA's for Aodhan's ever-growing brain), and some hemp seeds for me. I will be making this improv dish over and over again - a great snack!

Pumpkin Squares
2 cups of walnuts
1 cup of pecans
2 tbsp of crushed hemp seeds
3/4 cup of oats
1/2 cup of flour (I used 85% whole meal)
1/2 cup of oil (you could omit the oil/flour/oats and make a 100% raw crust by adding some soaked dates and chilling the crust rather then baking it)

1 can of pumpkin (ok, I didn't use a FULL can, I had skimmed a bit off the top for my oatmeal in the morning)
1/2 of maple syrup
1/4 of agave syrup
1/2 cup of arrowroot powder
3/4 of almond milk

I made the crust first - adding all the nutty ingredients in the food processor and pulsing for about 30 seconds. I added my oil, flour and oats and pulsed for a further 30 seconds. I pressed this into the bottom of a 10 inch brownie tin and popped it into the oven for 15 minutes, while I made the filling.

The filling wasd dead easy. I washed out the food processor (god, I really want a kitchen aid) and added the arrowroot and milk first, giving it a minute to mix together. I then simply added the remaining ingredients and pulsed for 45 seconds. I added the filling to the baked crust and slammed the whole thing in the 375 degree oven for 40 minutes.

This treat is NOT super sweet by any account...so if you are wanting something a little more sugary then up your maple or agave syrups in the recipe, or add a little maple syrup to the top when serving. Yum Yum.

In non-food related news, Aodhan turned 12 weeks yesterday. I can't believe 12 weeks has floated by since he was born. Kevin and I were commenting the other day that we just can't imagine our lives without him in it. He is rapidly losing all signs of newborn 'ness' and seems to develop new skills everyday.

He is smiling like mad, talking (with lots of goos, ahhhs and ohhhs), holds his head like a champ, does fine stuff during tummy time, bats his toys, tries so hard to lift his shoulders and head as if to sit up, and kicks like crazy when he is lying down. He has already had (still does a touch) a first cold, thanks to his daddy going back to the germ factory of school, and seems to be dealing better with his reflux.

I am a lucky mummy and actually sleep more now then I ever did in my pre-mummy days (when I was asleep by about 10 and up at around 5). Now, I fall asleep around 9 - 9 30 and Aodhan doesn't really wake up until about 9 30 the next day. There are about 3 night feeds, but bed sharing and breast feeding mean that I don't really do much waking in order to accomodate Aodhan's chilled out needs. He is amazing. I just can't get enough of him. I have even been able to start back at the gym, and am retraining my body to run my first post-baby race on October 11th (a BreastCancer run). I am loving mummyhood! Oh, and for any other vegan women out there who are thinking about pregnancy and their lifestyle, check out The Mother. My article on Vegan Pregancy is in their September/October issue.

Speaking of mummies....I am so excited to be flying home for Christmas to see my mommy! We weren't going to fly, but we decided that Aodhan's first Christmas should be spent with family and friends. I can't wait to get home and see my family and celebrate all the great things that have happened this year - Aodhan, my brother's wedding, my mom's new job, my sister's general awesomeness!

Have a Happy Vegan day everyone!


Johanna said...

glad things are going well - he looks such a baby in the first photo and a grown up little boy in the second - funny how they can change how they look so much

that pumpkin slice sounds delicious - I want a piece now!

Mihl said...

12 weeks! He's about as old as my sisters son.Fascinationg how fast little children grow and how much they learn. We haven'd had any storms here yet, but they will sure come. I have a huge pumpkin sitting on the living room table, I think I should collect 10-20 pumpkin recipes and cook up a storm. I'm not sure if I am ready for the sweet stuff yet although your squares look delicious!

The Voracious Vegan said...

Pumpkin squares!!?! YUM! Those look amazing and the recipe sound so simple. Thank you for sharing!

miss v said...

those sound great - i love that it's pumpkin season. and sorry that it's difficult for you to round up in brussels - that's a shame!

Lauren said...

Oh my gosh!! He is adorrrrrable!!!!

I love anything pumpkin, thanks for the recipe!

Best wishes, glad everything is going well!

A said...

OMG... he is absolutely amazing and perfect!!! I agree completely with you about night nursing and co sleeping. I did it with my 2 babies (now three and 19 months). We were all happy, fed and well rested! It's the only way to go! I love your pumpkin squares too.... I just blogged about pumpkin yesterday! I'll have to try your recipe! Congrats on your wonderful baby!!!!

Anonymous said...

Your baby is so cute.

Thanks for the kind words on my blog. My brother sent me an email saying he hated me and never wants to speak to me again after reading the post.

I love your blog. It is great.

Bianca said...

Ah, the baby is soooo cute! This is the first pic I've seen of him. Adorable! The pumpkin squares sound delightful. I always resist fall at first, but I'm starting to get used to the idea.

Jen said...

i'm happy things are going well for you! i love all things pumpkin and look forward to trying this recipe.

i'm almost 30 weeks along. it's funny--i love being a mom; however, i don't handle pregnancy so well. i think some women are just good at it and some women like me just have a hard time. or perhaps i'm just projecting and being pregnant is really hard this time around because i'm also working full-time and managing a toddler while pregnant.

how do you pronounce your child's name? what is the meaning? it looks beautiful, but i don't know how to pronounce it. your baby is gorgeous!

Cyn said...

I love pumpkin, those squares sound super delish. And your baby is so cute! Awww.

Meredith (Pursuing Balance) said...

Yum! Thanks for sharing this recipe! I love pumpkin. And such an adorable baby! Aww!

half pint pixie said...

awww he is sooo cute & oooh those squares look yummy! I've just subscribed to "The Mother" so hopefully I'll be reading your article very soon, well done!

Sal said...

awwww Aodhan is soooo cute!!

your recipe sounds awesome, i wish you could get canned pumpkin in the uk!!

Meghan (Making Love In the Kitchen) said...

I do a yearly pumpkin themed episode of my video series (Making Love In The Kitchen) where my dad and I put on costumes and make something out of pumpkin. I think this might be this year's winner!

Vegetation said...

Mmmm those pumpkin squares look fantastic!

It's nice to hear how well things are going :) Time with them really does fly. I'm still amazed that mine are 10 and soon to be 7!

aTxVegn said...

It's so good to hear how much you are enjoying being a mommy! Your son is soooo beautiful.

Mrs. Mandy said...

Just found your blog through Twitter. So excited to make these pumpkin squares! Thank you.

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Pumpkin Squares sound so nice!

Anonymous said...

So cute!

I keep checking the other blog wondering how it is all going and then realised stupidly today that I should look here too..

Funny, I think of you as I go exercising now. Walking up a hill, thinking of you trying to get fit after-baby too. Baby in sling makes the hills just that little bit harder:)

he looks adorable, glad you're well!