Pumpkin Mac and Cheese with Spring Vegetables

Happy Easter Sunday everyone! It doesn’t really feel like Easter for me. Without chocolate or gifts its just another weekend. We use to celebrate by having a picnic and gorging on chocolate, but this year everyone’s been busy. In a way I am happy I didn’t get any unwanted chocolate. No one ever buys me dairy free chocolate. I don’t know if I should just be grateful that people think to give me something or I should be annoyed that they know I can’t eat it and give it to me anyway. Marco usually eats any dairy gifts I get so he’s happy either way.

Since Marco has had a couple of days off with me, we finally watched the new documentary Hungry for Change (trailer). If you haven’t seen it, I really recommend trying to get a copy and taking the time to watch it. If you know me personally I would be happy to give you a copy. According to their Facebook page “HUNGRY FOR CHANGE exposes shocking secrets the diet, weight loss and food industry don’t want you to know about; deceptive strategies designed to keep you coming back for more.” If you need some guidance or a refresher to get you back in the right direction it is really motivational. I really needed a refresher to get back into a routine of increasing my fruit and leafy green vegetable intake and exercising more. Marco needed a reminder to stop eating so much sugar and consider eating more fruit and vegetables.

???????????????????????????????So after watching this doc, Marco and I decided we need to start juicing. I haven’t pulled out my juicer for over a year. I originally got it to make cocktails, when I use to love to drink, then I started using it to make juices to loose weight. Now I really want to juice so I can get more vegetables and fruit into my diet for overall wellness. It really doesn’t take long to do, so I am making a commitment to start juicing more. Its back on my counter top now, so no more excuses.

This morning I made a delicious juice for us, made of watermelon, apple, carrot, lime and ginger. It was so refreshing. Still it didn’t have a lot of vegetables, but I am going to work us up to it. I felt really great after and didn’t need my usually morning coffee. In fact I am trying to cut down on coffee, if not for the sake of my insides, but for the sake of my teeth. I noticed about a months back I didn’t have coffee for a few days and my teeth were looking so much whiter. So it was incentive to consider cutting back. I don’t drink a lot of coffee, only one flat white once day, but I shouldn’t be relying on that boost. I should be getting from enough sleep, more nutrients and not forgetting to take my pyroluria medication.

Although it was raining all day we still managed to get some exercise  We went to Forest Lake to walk around the lake. Even though it rained the whole time it was really worth getting out of the house. After that we were quite hungry, so I made this comfort dinner. Marco begged me not to add in the vegetables to the pumpkin ‘cheese’ sauce, since he loved it so much, but in the end he was happy he ate them together, rather than apart. This is a great dish to sneak in some vegetables for your kids or veggie hating partners. It is also low fat and gluten free. I also baked the seeds from the pumpkin for some extra Vitamin E. For more info on the health benefits of pumpkin seeds check out WHFoods.

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Pumpkin Mac and Cheese with Spring Vegetable (vegan, gluten free, soy free, nut free)

Ingredients:

500g thinly sliced pumpkin (I use kent and butternut)

4 serves of gluten free macaroni or other short pasta

olive oil

1 tablespoon vegan butter (I used nutlex)

1 tablespoon corn flour (or arrowoot flour)

2.5 cups plant milk (oat; almond or soy if you can tolerate)

2 teaspoons dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon ground tumeric

8 tablespoons nutritional yeast

sea salt & pepper to taste

1 head of broccoli, roughly chopped

1 cup frozen peas

2 cups baby spinach

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Place slices of pumpkin in a tray and toss with olive oil. Cook pumpkin for 30 mins or until soft.???????????????????????????????

2. In the meantime prepare the cheese sauce. Melt the butter in a large pan on low heat. While it is melting combine the almond milk and corn flour and whisk. Then add the plant milk to the pan with the melted butter.???????????????????????????????

3. Add the dijon mustard, garlic powder, tumeric and whisk until it thickens.

4. Add the nutitional yeast, salt and pepper and whisk.

5. Cook the macroni according to packet directions.

6. Add the roasted pumpkin to the cheese sauce. Use the whisk or potato masher to blend it through. Alternativly you could put it in the processor if you want the sauce to be smoother.???????????????????????????????

7. Heat another pan with olive oil, then saute the broccoli and frozen peas until tender.

8. Add the broccoli, peas and spinach to the cheese sauce. Heat through until the spinach has wilted.

9. Stir through the macaroni then serve.

*Serves 4

*I garnished mine with pumpkin seeds from the butternut & kent pumpkin. Just coat in canola/olive oil, salt & pepper and bake for 5 mins or until golden. Also makes a great snack.

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18 thoughts on “Pumpkin Mac and Cheese with Spring Vegetables

      • A bizarre version that I have made is an omelet with pumpkin filling. I got crazy and beat the eggs till they foam. The omelet was thick. For the filling, I fry pumpkin with onions, pepper, salt and cumin. The cumin goes well with pumpkin. I’ve added rockets too! My wife loves it. But it was ugly so I did not post. Lol !! 🙂

  1. well…so happy to be here! Actually found you via Peri at Peri’s Spice Handle…so now I have another blog for looks like more wonderful food ideas! I Love Indian Food (and anything India), but will definitely be trying out this pasta recipe…and others my eyes have already spotted. 🙂 You might perhaps be interested in checking out my blogs as well: http://notinindia2012.wordpress.com and my India Journal Blog: http://janesindiajournals.wordpress.com
    The world of blogging is wonderful! And very often delicious!! 😀
    with love light and JOY

    • Thanks so much for you comment Jane, I always love to see new people pop in 🙂 I will definitely check out your blog for some inspiration. I love Indian food, I have made a couple of recipes on here but I am not a natural at it.

  2. This looks yummy! I have a big chunk of pumpkin in the fridge. I think I know what to do with it now 🙂
    I gave my juicer away about 6 months ago. I hadn’t used it in months. I’m glad to hear that you are using yours.

    • I hope your family like it 🙂 I’m really loving juicing at the moment. I hope to get a better juicer or one of those liquidizers soon, so I can keep more nutrients in the juice. I think you mentioned a while back that you got good blender.

  3. This looks absolutely scrumptious. Just the thing for our coming winter. Always great to find another fantastic veggie blog and an Aussie one makes it all the better 🙂

    • Thanks! I didn’t realise you were an Aussie too. I really like seeing what other vegan Australian cooking blogs use, since we can’t get a lot of the stuff from overseas. What state are you in? I’m in Brisbane

      • I don’t “food blog” per se, I am more into permaculture and gardening. I live in Tassie, North Tassie on the Tamar River on 4 acres that we inherited in 2010 and are slowly converting into a massive food forest :). It is taking us time because we are penniless student hippies BUT the fun is in the innovation :). I follow quite a few gorgeous Queensland vegan food blogs. I love your ability to get hold of the most amazing tropical fruits and veggies up there! I only wish I could get hold of some of what is available to you. I come from W.A. originally and Tassie is a very VERY small place when you don’t eat meat and the natives are all meat eating tree fellers 😉

    • I’m so happy you enjoyed it 🙂 I never got brought up on mac and cheese but now I have discovered it i love it. great thing about the vegan version is it taste just as good and doesn’t stick to the pot after lol

  4. Pingback: Best Baked Cheezy Butternut Pumpkin Pasta | Live Blissful

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