Ah, fall. This is my favorite season – I love the colors, the cooler temperatures, and the foods associated with fall and harvest. Whether I’m eating a fresh, crunchy apple from my parents’ farm in Minnesota or homemade pumpkin pie, nutrition comes in a delicious variety this season. Following are a few of my favorite fall foods.
1) butternut squash. this is a great way to get your vitamin A if you are burned out on carrot sticks and don’t enjoy liver. Wrap the whole squash in tin foil (place a cookie sheet underneath to catch drippings) and bake in the oven at 350 for about an hour depending on size. You can also microwave it if you need a side dish in a hurry. Add a little cinnamon or nutmeg, a dash of brown sugar, and your family will love it!
2) Butternut Bisque is a great recipe on allrecipes.com. I substitute 1% milk for the cream to lower the fat, and used low-sodium broth so it could double up as babyfood.
3) Chocolate Chip Pumpkin cookies. I hear this is a weightwatchers recipe so I’ll give them the credit, but I have never verified that rumor. Regardless, it’s a great recipe for beginning cooks because of its simplicity:
2 cups chocolate chips
1 spice cake box mix
1 15oz can pumpkin (not the pie mix)
Preheat oven to 350. Mix ingredients. drop by rounded spoonfuls onto a greased cookie sheet. Bake for 15 minutes and enjoy! These have a cake-like consistency and also taste good as mini-muffins. If you want to make it healthier, substitute raisins or dried cranberries instead of chocolate chips to decrease the calories and boost immunity-promoting anthocyanins.
This makes two dozen cookies, each with 150 calories, 7g fat, 23g carbs, 2g fiber and providing 54% of your vitamin A for the day. I’ll take that for dessert!