Pumpkin Pasta with Eyeballs

Well, it is that time of year when you can legitimately have some fun with your food. As well as putting pumpkin in everything, let’s make our food a little spooky too! This pumpkin pasta sauce is a doddle, just bake it in the oven while you get on with something more important – making an elaborate Halloween costume perhaps? Then either serve the pasta and sauce as they are, or if you want to go the extra mile, bake some meatballs (my plant based recipe is below) and top with sliced cheese and olives to make them into eyeballs.

I’ll be sharing some other Halloween food inspo soon, but I would love to know your Halloween classics. Let me know in the comments.

Liz x

Pumpkin Pasta Ingredients (serves 4-6 people)

  • 1/2 a kuri squash pumpkin (or butternut), gutted and diced
  • 6 cloves of garlic to ward off the vampires, peeled
  • 2 tins of chopped tomatoes
  • Olive oil, salt & pepper to taste
  • 500g dried pasta

Method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200C. Find a deep baking dish.
  2. Tumble the diced pumpkin/squash and peeled garlic cloves into the dish.
  3. Drizzle generously with olive oil and seasoning with salt and pepper. Mix with your hands then bake for 20 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.
  4. Remove the dish from the oven, mash the vegetables with a fork then tip in the two tins of chopped tomatoes. Season again with some extra salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Stir well then return the dish to the oven for another 20 minutes or so until hot and bubbling. Meanwhile cook your pasta in boiling water according to the instructions on the packet.
  6. Drain the pasta and stir it through the hot sauce. Enjoy as it is or with meatballs, cheese slices and olives (see below for my vegan meatball recipe).

Vegan Meatballs Ingredients (makes approx 40 small balls)

  • 50g nuts (walnuts are brilliant here but any fatty nut will do)
  • 50g pumpkin or sunflower seeds
  • 150g porridge oats
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 onion & 4 cloves of garlic, diced and fried in a little olive oil until soft
  • 2 tins of cooked lentils, drained
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • a handful of chopped parsley
  • salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. You will need a food processor with an S blade attachment. Pulse the nuts and seeds first until they resemble course flour.
  2. The add the remaining ingredients and pulse together, stopping to scrape down the sides occasionally, until you have a thick, rustic paste. Don’t over-blend, it’s nice to retain a bit of texture.
  3. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed with more salt, pepper or herbs.
  4. Then form the balls by squishing a small amount of the mixture together using your cupped palm and fingers. Gently roll between your palms into balls and place on a baking sheet lined with baking parchment.
  5. Toss with a little vegetable oil and bake until hot. Around 20 minutes at 200C is sufficient, these veggie meatballs can get a little drier than their meaty counterparts so be careful not to overcook. Turn the meatballs halfway through cooking. Serve in pasta sauce or with mash and gravy.

Autumn Overnight Oats

Overnight oats are so creamy and delicious, they fill you up and feel a bit special. Make these and give your past self a pat on the back in the morning! This autumnal version is probably my favourite. A creamy and sweetly-spiced pumpkin and cashew cream layer topped with an apple, oat, chia and pumpkin seed layer. I eat mine with a dollop of natural yoghurt on top.

Overnight oats last well in the fridge for 3 days. Mix up the ingredients and layer them up in jars or glasses and that’s breakfast sorted for a few mornings. This recipe makes 6 portions. Enjoy! And don’t forget to share your recreations with us in the comments or over on our friendly community Facebook group.

Liz x

Ingredients (serves 6)

Pumpkin Cashew Cream:

  • 500g kuri squash pumpkin (or sub with butternut squash or similar)
  • 100g cashew nuts
  • 6 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves

Apple Overnight Oats:

  • 180g porridge oats
  • 3 tbsp chia seeds
  • 6 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 2 apples, grated
  • 500g milk (any milk you prefer)
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • Yoghurt to serve

Method

  1. Chop the kuri squash into bite sized chunks, no need to peel but do remove the seeds, and roast at 200C until soft. This usually takes around 20 minutes.
  2. Spoon the cooked squash into a blender with the rest of the Pumpkin Cashew Cream ingredients and blend into a smooth, thick cream. Taste and add more maple syrup if you prefer it sweeter.
  3. Mix all the Apple Overnight Oats ingredients in a large bowl.
  4. Divide the pumpkin cream between 6 bowls/glasses/jars. Top with the apple-oat mixture.
  5. Cover the portions and refrigerate overnight (or eat right away). They should stay fresh for 3 days in the fridge.
  6. Serve with a dollop of natural yoghurt. Scoop down to get a bit of both layers in each bite!

Pumpkin Spiced Granola

Celebrate the season with this warmly spiced, toasty, nutty granola. Our newly harvested kuri squashes are so delicious. Sweet, nutty and buttery, everything you want from a winter squash. Add some to your next order here, we anticipate they’ll be flying out of our packing shed. We also stock organic oats, maple syrup, cinnamon, ginger, olive oil, nuts, linseeds and pumpkin seeds in compostables bags…everything you need to make this recipe. Liz x

Ingredients

  • 500g porridge oats
  • 200g pumpkin seeds
  • 200g chopped nuts (I used hazelnuts this time, pecan nuts would be amazing)
  • 50g linseeds
  • 400g-ish of kuri squash, chopped and de-seeded (half a medium squash)
  • 250ml maple syrup (or sweetener of choice) – add more if you prefer a sweeter granola
  • 250ml olive oil (or oil of your choice)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp each of ground cinnamon and ginger
  • 1/2 tsp each of ground nutmeg and cloves (optional)

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 200C and roast the chopped squash until soft (approx 20 minutes). Then turn your oven down to 150C.
  2. Place the roasted squash into a deep bowl or jug with the maple syrup, olive oil, salt and spices. Blend until smooth with a stick blender.
  3. Measure the oats, nuts and seeds into a large mixing bowl then pour over the spiced squash puree and mix well. Taste and add more syrup or spices if you like it sweeter or spicier.

4. Spread the mixture out onto large, lined baking trays and bake until crispy and golden. This can take over an hour depending on your oven. Keep an eye on the trays. Remove them from the oven every 15 minutes and stir the granola so that it gets evenly toasted.

5. Allow the granola to cool completely on the trays before storing in an airtight container. Enjoy with yoghurt or milk for breakfast or serve on smoothie bowl or ice cream… Homemade granola stays fresh for 2 weeks in an airtight container at room temperature.

Autumn Gnocchi

Gnocchi are easy to make but they do require a bit of time and a fair few steps. So save this recipe for when you have the time to really take your time and enjoy the process. These colourful autumn gnocchi are made with an exciting new harvest on the farm, uchi kuri squash, and our beautiful beetroot.

Serve simply sautéd with butter, garlic, herbs and kale, or make a rich tomato pasta sauce to pop them on. Here’s a 30 second video to show you the process, otherwise, read on below. Liz x

Ingredients (serves approx 8)

  • a small winter squash like our uchi kuri (or sub with a butternut squash)
  • 8 small beetroots, or 4 large
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • plain flour (or a gluten free plain flour blend) – amounts vary, see method below
  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • 6 sprigs of rosemary (or sage?)
  • enough butter (or more olive oil) to sauté
  • 8 leaves of kale (sub with beetroot leaves if you have any fresh)
  • a few handfuls of hazelnuts (we sell compostable bags of organic hazelnuts here)

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 200C and get two baking dishes ready.
  2. Chop your squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Chop the squash into chunks and put it into one roasting dish. Scrub the beetroots and chop them into chunks too. Put them into the other dish. No need to peel either of these lovely, organic vegetables.
  3. Season both dishes with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Then get them into the oven to roast until soft. This usually takes around 20-30 minutes, just keep an eye on them.
  4. Allow the roasted veg to cool a little, then blend the squash into a purée. Taste and slightly over-season with salt. It needs to be a little too salty as you will be adding a fair bit of flour next.
  5. Add 4 large serving spoons of plain flour to the food processor and gently pulse the mixture together. Be very careful not to over-mix as this can make the dough tough. I do this in a large food processor with the ‘S’ blade attachment, but you can use a stick blender to purée then just fold in the flour in a large bowl. Add more flour as needed (amounts vary as different vegetables have different water content) until you achieve a soft dough.
  6. Scoop the dough into a bowl, then repeat the process with the beetroot. You will probably find that the beetroot dough needs less flour.
  7. Cut the dough into manageable portions. Generously flour a clean work surface and roll the dough into thick snakes. Cut the snakes into bite size pieces.
  8. Gently roll each bite over a ridged gnocchi board or the back of a fork. Place the gnocchi onto large, floured plates or trays.
  9. Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Then drop the squash gnocchi in, in small batches. Boil briefly, just until they start to rise to the surface, then scoop them out with a slotted spoon and place in a tray, ready to sauté. Repeat this process until all the squash gnocchi are boiled, then do the same with the beetroot. Do the beetroot AFTER the squash so that the squash gnocchi don’t get stained pink.
  10. At this point you can space out any gnocchi you won’t be needing right away on a tray and freeze. When they are frozen solid they can be tipped into a box in the freezer to use another day.
  11. Gnocchi can be sautéed, roasted, boiled, baked in a sauce… I think they are best sautéed in butter or olive oil and winter herbs. Get a large frying pan on the hob with a very generous knob of butter, tumble in as many gnocchi as you like and sauté until hot and starting to take on some colour.
  12. Add torn kale leaves, sliced garlic, rosemary and chopped hazelnuts to the pan and cook until the kale has wilted and the nuts are toasty. Season as needed and serve.